Fasule (Bean and Vegetable Soup) – Totally Healthy, Totally Hearty Comfort Food

 

So this warm weather one day and freezing weather another is insane!! It’s cold and snowy here in Toronto and so today I am making one our family favourites (recipe adapted from a family recipe) Fasule – Bean and Vegetable Soup. It’s traditionally made with lamb (with bone) and beans, however the kids and I don’t eat lamb and so  I started making this with beans and vegetables instead and it is always a huge hit (plus its full of fresh ingredients and heart healthy nutrients!) Serve it up with some warm bread (whatever kind suits your fancy) and a nice salad and you’ve got gold. (substitute organic wherever you like)

 

INGREDIENTS

1 907 g bag of White Kidney Beans

I Red Bell Pepper – chopped into small pieces

1 Tomato – chopped into small pieces

1 Medium Onion – chopped into small pieces

6 Stalks Celery – chopped into small pieces

4 Large Carrots (or 6 Medium) – chopped into small pieces

2-4 Tbsp powered or gelatin Chicken Broth or Vegetable Broth / OR 1 900 ml box (use organic or regular, whatever you like) 

2-3 Tbsp  Salted Butter 

2 Tbsp Extra Virgin Olive Oil

Spices to taste – I use about 1 – 2 Tsp of dried Paprika, Garlic Powder, Oregano, Sea Salt and Pepper

 

Put a large pot of water on to boil. I use a large 7.5 quart french oven. While waiting, sift through beans and discard any black or bad beans. Then place beans into a large bowl and rinse with room temp water (tap water is fine) and then strain. Repeat this step 4 times (this is apparently the magic step to the beans cooking properly). Place the rinsed beans (x4…lol) into the boiling water, once at a rolling boil, remove the pot from the stove top and strain the beans again.

 

Add the chopped vegetables to the pot, lower the temperature and place the lid on to soften.

Once the vegetables are soft, add the butter, EVOO, spices, beans, broth (liquid or powder) and fill the pot with water with enough  water so that it is full with room for boiling without spilling over. Once the soup has come to a boil, lower to a simmer and wait….and wait a little longer.

This soup needs to simmer for around 3 hours, until the beans are tender but not mushy. It also needs to be stirred every so often, perhaps every 15-20 minutes to make sure the beans don’t stick to the bottom of the pot. You might find you need to add some water to thin it out a bit if it does get too thick after simmering for so long. Just add a bit at a time as needed, if needed.

This soup is a bit of a labour of love, but totally worth the effort and time. You can adjust the spices or veggies as desired and it makes a ton so you can freeze the leftovers, if there ARE any left overs. Serve it with some warm bread (or not if watching your starchy carb intake) and salad/veggies to make a super healthy meal that will totally make you feel cozy on a cold winter day. Enjoy!!