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Member recipe

Tuscan White Bean Soup

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Serves 6

Filled with flavor, this satisfying soup is a mainstay of Italian country cooking.

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  • 500g dried white beans
  • 4 tbsp olive oil
  • 3 medium leeks, white and tender green parts, washed well and chopped
  • 5 celery stalks, chopped
  • 3 garlic cloves, finely chopped
  • 3 carrots, peeled or scrubbed and diced small
  • 1200ml good-quality vegetable stock
  • 1.5 tsp fresh rosemary, chopped, or 1 tsp dried
  • Salt and freshly-ground black pepper, to taste
  • Juice of half a lemon
  • 30g grated Parmagiano-Reggiano or Asiago cheese (optional)


    1. Soak beans in plenty of water overnight, then drain and rinse well.
    2. Heat 2 tablespoons of the oil in a heavy-bottomed soup pot and add leeks. Cook for 5 minutes, stirring frequently, until leeks begin to soften.
    3. Add celery, garlic, and carrots and cook, stirring frequently, for 10 minutes. Add stock, rinsed beans, herbs, salt, and pepper. Bring soup to a boil, then cover, reduce heat, and allow to simmer over low heat for 1 - 2 hours until the beans are cooked.
    4. If you prefer your soup more creamy, puree a third of the soup in a blender and pour back into the pot. Taste and add the lemon juice, and more salt and pepper if needed.
    5. Ladle soup into individual bowls. Top each portion with some of the remaining olive oil and sprinkle with cheese, if desired.
    6. Serve with a huge hunk of crusty wholegrain bread and glass of red wine!

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