White Bean and Greens Soup

White beans and is one of my favorite combinations ; it makes great soup and can also top pasta or become a dip for crusty bread at parties. This soup version can be adapted for whatever are on hand.  If using , your cooking time will be slightly longer than for kale, spinach or chard.

Ingredients

1 Tbsp olive oil

1 large onion, chopped

1 bay leaf

2 stalks celery, diced

2 medium carrots, diced

1 1/2 qts (6 cups) water

2 15-oz cans cannelini beans (or 4 cups cooked white beans)

5 large cloves garlic, minced

1 head or bunch collards, kale, chard , chopped w/ stems removed

minced parsley (garnish, optional)

grated hard cheese (garnish, optional)

Preparation

Heat the oil in a large pot. Add onion, bay leaf, celery, carrots and salt and saute over medium heat 10 minutes, until onions are translucent.  Add water, bring to a boil, cover and simmer for 15 minutes or until everything is very tender. Add beans, garlic, and as much of the greens as fit. If necessary, wait 5 minutes until the greens begin to cook down to add more in batches.  When greens are tender (5 minutes for kale or chard, 15+ minutes for collards), add pepper to taste. Serve with fresh parsley and grated cheese.

Adapted from The Enchanted Broccoli Forest by Mollie Katzen

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