Italian Bean and Kale Soup

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READY IN: 12hrs
Recipe by David J Rust

A bit salty but rich and creamy, this soup reminds me of the way in which I love salted caramel. It's not sweet but the richness of the fat in the cream goes incredibly well with the saltiness of the reduced chicken broth. I love soft beans in soup and enjoy pairing them with whole cloves of garlic. You can leave the whole cloves out if your diners don't care for them. I, personally, love a large, soft clove (like a tiny burst of butter or an especially large and soft bean) with the occasional bite. There aren't many in this dish, but I notice if they're left out.


  1. In a large pot, bring the chicken broth to a boil. Add the bay leaves and minced garlic and reduce heat to a medium boil. Uncovered, reduce the liquid to 8 Cups (one half original volume). This will take between 1-2 hours.
  2. Remove the bay leaves and take the broth off the heat. Allow the broth to cool.
  3. Add the dried, great northern beans to the broth, cover, and refrigerate overnight (or at least 8 hours).
  4. Once the beans have re-hydrated, place the beans and the broth back in the pot and bring to a low boil or simmer. Cover and cook for 45 minutes to an hour.
  5. Remove the stems and central stalk from the kale leaves. Finely chop the kale. Add to the simmering broth along with the whole garlic cloves and the whipping cream. Bring the liquid back to a simmer, cover, and cook for another 45 minutes.
  6. Serve, hot.

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