Prep 30 mins
Cook 8 hrs
This soup is wonderful -- don't skip the basil pistou -- never had one before but it makes the soup heavenly and different from any other bean soup I've ever had. For the second day lunch - I just had the soup added the pistou to the tupperware container - heated it up in the microwave at work -- the smell was wonderful and the taste -- yum! I changed the original recipe from The Healthy Slow Cooker to adjust to what I had on hand. My version is listed here -- the original version was very similar but used larger amounts of ingredients - and I used what I had on hand.
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1 onion, chopped
- 2 carrots, peeled and sliced
- 1 teaspoon fennel seed
- 1 (14 ounce) can tomatoes, diced
- 4 cups vegetable broth
- 2 potatoes, peeled and diced
- 2 (14 ounce) cans white beans (I used Cannellini, white kidney beans and chick peas)
- 2 cups frozen green beans (do not thaw the beans, or they will turn mushy with the long crock pot cooking time)
For the Pistou
- 1 cup basil leaves
- 4 garlic cloves
- 1⁄3 cup parmesan cheese, grated
- 1⁄4 cup olive oil (I use extra virgin olive oil)
- In a small skillet over medium heat, add fennel seeds and cook stirring for a few minutes (2-3 minutes) or until seeds are toasted and fragrant. Remove from heat and transfer to a mortar and pestal and crush seeds. Set aside.
- In a skillet, heat oil over medium heat for 30 seconds or so. Add onions and carrots, stirring until vegetables are softened (6-10 minutes).
- Stir in toasted fennel seeds and cook stirring another minute.
- Add tomatoes with juice and bring to a boil.
- Transfer mixture to crock pot.
- Add broth, potatoes, white beans and green beans.
- Cover and cook on low for 8 hours. Season with salt and pepper.
- To make pistou -- in a food processor or blender combine basil, garlic and parmesan - process until smooth. Slowly add the olive oil through the food tube until combined.
- Ladle soup into bowls and top with the pistou.
3 Stars, pleasantly different and mellow soup with the basil pistou. DH said 3 stars, he's hard core carnivore, I would give 3.5; I would make changes to thicken the soup when I make it again (carrot or potato-garlic puree or add another can of beans already pureed or pressure cook with a ham hock or ham bone to draw out the gelatin), I would probably use a pressure cooker to intensify the flavors, and a non-vegetarian would welcome the addition of a roasted ham hock. This took much longer to prepare for the crock pot than I usually spend, and the end result was a thinner soup than I prefer. Thank goodness I had a bushy basil plant; it looks well-pruned now. The parmesan cheese ended up sticking to the spoon and bowl, requiring careful elbow-greased cleaning. Accepting the soup for what it is, I enjoyed it, but I would prefer more depth to the taste and I would have to add ham for DH on the next go-round. Made for Newest Zaar Tag.