Saturday, May 26, 2012

White Bean and Lemon Soup – has the X-Factor !

Pin It

Compare and contrast: your beloved feeding you oysters... or strawberries... and now, that same scene with soup... Eeek!!! Let’s face it, soup just isn’t sexy. Most of the time, it isn’t even good-looking.
I think the writer, Judith Martin, sums up the nature of soup beautifully in this quote:
"Do you have a kinder, more adaptable friend in the food world than soup? Who soothes you when you are ill? Who refuses to leave you when you are impoverished and stretches its resources to give a hearty sustenance and cheer? Who warms you in the winter and cools you in the summer? Yet who also is capable of doing honour to your richest table and impressing your most demanding guests? Soup does its loyal best, no matter what undignified conditions are imposed upon it. You don't catch steak hanging around when you're poor and sick, do you?"
I think she is right. Soup is a friend with an engaging personality, able to charm just about anyone, be they king or pauper.
One of the things I love about soup is its ability to surprise. It is capable of having that X-Factor, that Susan Boyle moment. Then, a seeming bland bowlful - made from a handful of simple ingredients - will sing out at the top of its voice, hitting all the right notes, and just blow you away.
For 4 servings you will need...
2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
1 medium onion, finely chopped
1 stick of celery, peeled and finely chopped
1 bay leaf
1 fat clove of garlic, crushed
400g tinned white beans such as Cannellini (rinsed and drained)
750mls good-quality chicken stock (use vegetable stock if you prefer)
1 teaspoon finely grated lemon zest
2 tablespoons lemon juice 
A tablespoon of finely chopped fresh parsley (optional) 

Magic beans!

1                    Place the olive oil in a medium saucepan over a medium heat and add the onion, celery and bay leaf. Lower the heat and cook gently for about 5 minutes until onion is soft and translucent but has not taken on any colour. Add the garlic and cook for a further minute.
2                    Add the beans, stock, lemon zest and lemon juice to the saucepan. When it has come to the boil, lower the heat, cover and simmer gently for 15 minutes. Remove the bayleaf before blending the soup to a smooth liquid – a stick blender is the perfect tool for this.  Serve with a sprinkling of parsley and some good crusty bread.
Pin It

27 comments:

Magic of Spice said...

I adore soups, you can always get so creative with them and they are perfect for using up whatever you happen to have hanging around :)

This is a lovely and refreshing combination! Wishing you a fantastic weekend :)

SerenaB said...

I love soup and this looks fabulous! I don't care if it's sexy, it is the comfort factor!

Tina Bk said...

This is a very creative soup! There is not much I do not like that has lemons in it. With white beans as a favorite, I am sure I would enjoy this soup. A comforting soup is always welcome, even more so when it is something new-thanks for sharing!

Rosita Vargas said...

Soy fan de las sopas luce fantástica es una sopa reconfortante y saludable me encanta,hugs,hugs.

Kalyan said...

Just delicious...looks so easy to prepare and mouthwatering!

Jill Colonna said...

Ah, soup! Love that quote - it's too true, Hester. This does look wonderful and yes, do think it has the comforting X factor! Last night we were invited to friends and soup was served. French hubby now supping his words, as he wouldn't let us get the soup set for our wedding list!

Veronica Gantley said...

I love soup. I also love your quote. I think most things that are comforting are not sexy at all.

MyFudo™ said...

I have chicken and vegetable stock available....I'm gonna try both and see which one fared better. This sounds like a really comforting treat! Thanks!

gobakeyourself said...

This soup looks like the ultimate healthy but tasty and comforting recipe :D
Thanks for sharing my friend!

Cheers
Choc Chip Uru

Monet said...

I think your soup looks pretty amazing! And I love finding those soup recipes that surprise and delight. Thank you for sharing with me!

Anne@FromMySweetHeart said...

Who says soup can't be sexy?! Actually, Hester, I think this looks amazing! Soup is very deceptive. You know, how when you are first making it and you take a taste too soon and you think it's ho-hum. But let it stew and meld and you are right! Those flavors come singing through! I love soup all year round, and I especially love white bean soup. And I'm excited that this is paired with lemon! Beautiful!

The Harried Cook said...

I just love soups... and I LOVE the sound of this lemony soup... total comfort food... the flavors sound incredible! The Susan Boyle of soups, you say? I must try this one... Thank you for sharing :)

Dolly said...

ive never heard of white bean and lemon soup.. sounds so healthy!!!!

Lilly said...

I just recently discovered that I love beans. For no reason what so ever I started adding beans in my tomato soup and I LOVED it! I’m sure I’ll love your soup also. It looks very tasty --> sexy is overrated!

Soup is the best “food” every. It can be a whole meal by itself or compliment a main course. One of the few things you can eat a lot of totally guilt free =)

Kristen said...

I love the brightness that lemon gives things. I think you are right. This soup has what it takes!

Cakewhiz said...

I use white beans alot in my cooking. Using them in a soup is a great idea!

Anna @ the shady pine said...

What a fabulous quote! I love soup and this one sounds really tasty and the beans would giv such a lovely smooth texture.

Jen @ Savory Simple said...

I can't wait to try this, it sounds wonderful!

A SPICY PERSPECTIVE said...

HEY.... who says soup isn't sexy?!? This looks awfully sexy to me! ;)

Tiffany said...

This seems like the perfect summer soup! It's freezing cold in my office, so I am always looking for something to warm me up, BUT not something too heavy--it's is summer after all. This is perfect Hester!

firefoodie said...

Very Mediterranean, very summery and very refreshing. I can imagine the carnage if you forget to remove that bay leaf! A.

Sam @ My Carolina Kitchen said...

Love your bean soup. I'm a southern gal and beans go hand in hand with the south. Lemons are a welcome addition to just about everything.
Sam

Jen @ The Scrumptious Pumpkin said...

This is such a creative, unique idea for soup. The flavor profile sounds wonderful - yum! :)

Cucina49 said...

Am I wrong for thinking soup is kind of sexy? It isn't David's favorite, but I love it and I would so eat this one!

Parsley Sage said...

Susan Boyle soup. Love it. SOOOOO delicious :) I just had surgery yesterday and guess who is gonna be making wifey a lovely soup for lunch! I've got all these ingredients in the pantry and I think CK will do a fantastic job with this. Thanks so much for posting!

kankana said...

That does sound comforting and I love you added lemon :)

yumbolicious.net said...

LOVE soup, sexy it ain't but who cares?! Looks delish!