Sometimes there is nothing quite as warming and satisfying than a good bowl of soup. Whether you live in a frigid climate like Fargo, North Dakota or the simmering searing heat of Miami, you can travel to Italy without getting on a plane by whipping up your own Tuscan white bean soup.
I can’t lay claim to this recipe that I found in the wonderful vegan cookbook, Vegan Planet by Robin Robertson. The book is nothing short of a vegan cooking bible; I did, however, use the recipe as a guideline and since I wasn’t cooking for eight, I cut it down and tweaked it a bit here and there. Feel free to do the same.
One of the unique things about the soup is that it pairs beans with pasta. Sounds like pasta e fagoli, you say? Right you are, except this one is cooked and served by you and not Giada DeLaurentis.
One of the benefits about pairing pasta with beans is that in addition to being satisfying, you are pairing a carb (pasta) with a protein source (beans).
In addition to giving you a tasty meal or snack, it’s also nutritious and not loaded with wasted calories. If you happen to be diabetic, it won’t spike your blood sugar nearly as much as it would had you eaten the pasta and sauce alone.
Tuscan White Bean Soup: (keep in mind the calories listed are for the entire PREP and not the portion. The portion will be much lower unless you pig out and eat the whole thing!).
1 clove garlic 4 calories
1 small yellow or white onion 23 calories
1 Tsp. olive oil 50 calories
1 Six ounce can tomato paste 60 calories (diluted with one cup warm water)
1 ½ cups cooked or one 15 oz. can white beans drained and rinsed (any will do) 381 calories
6 cups vegetable stock 50-75 calories
Red peppers flakes to taste
2 bay leaves if desired
Oregano to taste
Salt and pepper to taste.
Boil the pasta until desired softness, drain and set aside.
Cook onion until sweating, then cook garlic, total about 5 minutes.
Reduce heat, and stir in tomato paste. Add the rest of the ingredients, bring to a boil, then reduce heat to low and simmer for 30 minutes.
Then add the pasta and cook for additional 10 minutes, folding the ingredients together, and then. Viola! Chow time!
I like to serve mine in a separate bowl next to a colorful side salad and a handful of banana chips.
Be sure to read more articles by Miami Vegan Examiner Glenn Osrin here.
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