May 16, 2009

Easy White Bean Soup

2 large garlic cloves, minced
1/4 cup plus 1/2 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
1 (14- to 15-oz) can diced tomatoes
1 3/4 cups reduced-sodium chicken broth
2 (19-oz) cans cannellini or small white beans, rinsed and drained (3 cups)
1 or 2 carrots, thinly sliced
1 teaspoon dried parsley
½ teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon black pepper
1 (1/2-lb) piece baked ham (1/2 to 3/4 inch thick), cut into 1/2-inch cubes

Cook garlic in 1/4 cup oil in a 3 1/2- to 4 1/2-quart heavy pot over moderately high heat, stirring, until golden, 1 to 2 minutes. Coarsely cut up tomatoes in can with kitchen shears, then add (with juice) to garlic in oil. Stir in broth, beans, carrots, parsley, salt, and pepper and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer, uncovered, 5 minutes

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