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Healthy Eating, Mains, Soups, Vegetarian

Bewley's Tuscan bean and tomato soup

Bewley's Tuscan bean and tomato soup
Kirk McKoy / Los Angeles Times

Dear SOS: Earlier this year my wife and I had the best Tuscan tomato soup at Bewley's on Grafton Street in Dublin, Ireland. It was thick, well-seasoned and simply delicious. We both loved it, and we have tried without success ... Read more

Total time: 1 hour, 45 minutes | Serves 10 to 16
  • 1/4 cup ( 1/2 stick) butter
  • 2 pounds baking potatoes (about 3), peeled and diced into 1/2-inch pieces
  • 1 leek, diced
  • 3 onions, diced and divided
  • 3 cups diced celery (about 8 stalks), divided
  • 1 (28-ounce) can tomatoes
  • 1 pound plum tomatoes (about 4), halved lengthwise
  • 1 teaspoon light brown sugar, more to taste
  • 1 tablespoon dried oregano
  • 1 tablespoon dried basil
  • 2 quarts vegetable broth
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • 2 cups diced carrot (about 4 carrots)
  • 2 cups diced fennel (from about 2 bulbs)
  • 4 cups cooked cannellini beans (white Italian kidney beans), from about 2 (15-ounce) cans, drained, or 1/2 pound dry

Step 1In a 5-quart heavy-bottom pot, melt the butter over medium-high heat. Stir in the potato, leek and all but 2 cups each of the onion and celery and cook, stirring frequently, until the onion just begins to color, about 10 to 12 minutes.

Step 2Add the canned tomatoes, plum tomatoes and brown sugar, stirring to crush the tomatoes and scrape any flavoring from the bottom of the pan.

Step 3Stir in the oregano, basil and vegetable broth. Bring the mixture to a boil, then reduce the heat to a simmer. Loosely cover the pan and continue to simmer until the vegetables break down and the soup begins to thicken, about 45 minutes. Remove from heat and puree the soup using an immersion blender, or in batches using a regular blender. Taste and season with 1 teaspoon salt and several grinds of black pepper, or as desired (the salt content of vegetable broth will vary by brand).

Step 4Stir in the carrot, fennel and remaining onion and celery. Continue to simmer gently until the vegetables are tender, 20 to 25 minutes, stirring frequently. About 10 minutes before the vegetables are tender, stir in the beans to warm. Taste and adjust the seasoning as desired.

Step 5This makes about 4 quarts soup, and will keep for up to 1 week, covered and refrigerated.

Note: Adapted from Bewley's Grafton Street Cafe in Dublin, Ireland.

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