There’s nothing like a steaming bowl of hot Soup to warm you on a cold autumn or winter evening. This soup is made with canned beans instead of dried beans, making it quick and easy. Any variety of white canned beans will be great with this soup, from the smaller navy bean to the medium great northern bean and the larger cannellini bean.
½ lb (250 g) pancetta, diced (optional)3 T (45 ml) extra-light olive oil
1 large yellow onion, diced
3 cloves garlic, minced
2 sprigs fresh thyme, tied together with cotton butcher’s twine
2 bay leaves
8 cups (2 litres) chicken stock
3 (14 oz/398 ml) cans great northern or any white beans, rinsed and drained
1 (3-inch/7.5-cm) piece Parmigiano-Reggiano Cheese rind
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
Chopped Italian parsley, for garnish
Freshly grated Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese Extra-virgin olive oil
In a large pot or Dutch oven, fry the pancetta over medium heat until golden.
Add the oil to the pot and sauté the onion until soft and translucent, about 10 minutes.
Add garlic and sauté another minute.
Add the thyme sprigs, bay leaves, chicken stock, beans, and cheese rind.
Season to taste with salt and pepper and simmer for about 25 minutes.
Remove the thyme sprigs, bay leaves, and cheese rind.
Ladle soup into bowls and sprinkle with parsley.
Serve with grated Parmigiano cheese and a drizzle of extra-virgin olive oil.
Serves 4 to 6