Thursday, December 10, 2009
Creamy White Bean Soup
This soup is a dream--in that I have been looking for years for a way to make a low fat creamy soup that doesn't taste low fat. My barometer on this experiment has been SPH's reaction. When he tasted this soup he said, "you did it!"
My secret weapon?
I've used evaporated milk for years, but mostly for sweet treats and such. But I recently started trying it in savory dishes to replace regular milk. It adds an extra layer of creaminess, and if you use the skim milk evaporated milk, it has no fat.
Best yet, because the soup recipe below is a good "base" to start, you can make it your own. I made the soup vegetarian and then sauteed up some serrano ham to sprinkle on top and steamed some spinach to mix into my bowl. I kept R and G's bowls plain and they gobbled it up.
Trust me, you want to try this easy, healthy, warms-you-right-up soup.
Creamy White Bean Soup
1 pound dried Great Northern Beans
8 cups water
2 teaspoons olive oil
1 medium onion, diced
4 garlic cloves, minced
1/4 cup white wine or water
1/2 cup flour
1 quart broth (you can use beef, chicken or vegetable)
1 - 12 oz can evaporated skim milk
Toppings/Add-ins: Ham, Bacon, Spinach, Peas, Broccoli, Bell Peppers, the list could go on...
Pour the beans and water into a large stock pot and pick out any unusual or funky looking beans (ones that are brown, or are "one of these beans are not like the other!" looking). Bring water to a boil. Boil for 5 minutes, simmer until the beans are tender. Drain in a colander.
In the same stock pot, bring the olive oil to medium high heat and add the onion and garlic. Cook for about 5 minutes or until the onions are slightly translucent. Add the wine or water and scrape any good browned bits off the bottom of the pan. Reduce heat to low.
Add the flour and stir well. The mixture will be very thick. Slowly add the broth, about a cup at a time and stir vigorously to ensure the flour mixes with the broth. Once all the broth is added, continue stirring and increase the temperature to high. Stir occasionally until the mixture comes to a boil. Let boil for a minute and then reduce heat to simmer. Add the evaporated milk and stir well.
Keep warm on the stovetop, stirring occasionally until ready to serve. Top with anything you choose, or simply serve plain.
Stay warm All-