It’s cold here again this week, so I’m back on the soup bandwagon. I like to make a big batch of soups on Sundays or Mondays. We tend to eat soups on Mondays for Meatless Monday, so my new routine is to make two different soups on Sundays if I can. Then we eat one of the soups on Sunday, and the other one on Monday. I typically reserve some of each for my lunches during the week, and then I freeze the rest, which makes for a super speedy meal on those evenings when I’m out of energy or ideas to cook. This seems to spice things up a bit versus eating the same thing for 4-5 meals (which wouldn’t bother Grant a bit, but bores me to tears).
I love rainbow chard. I mostly just like to saute it, but I had lots of it last week that needed to be used up. I decided to try it in some soup. This turned out delicious and will definitely be making it in our regular spring rotation when the chard really starts coming. If you don’t have chard, any green will do – kale, collards, spinach. I didn’t have any, but this would be delicious with a hearty, rustic whole grain bread to soak up the extra broth at the end.
- 2 tbsp oil (I used grapeseed, but feel free to use what you have on hand)
- 2 onions, diced
- 3-4 stalks celery, diced
- 3-4 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 tsp dried thyme
- 1 tsp dried basil
- 1 tsp dried oregano
- Sprinkle of dried rosemary (optional)
- 1 tsp red pepper flakes (more if you like it spicier)
- 1 cup dried chickpeas, rinsed and picked over
- 6 cups chicken or vegetable stock
- 2 14.5 ounce cans roasted tomatoes
- 15-20 large chard leaves (about two handfuls worth of the stems), rinsed thoroughly
- Salt and pepper to taste
- Freshly grated Parmesan cheese (optional)
- Fresh parsley (optional)
- Soak the beans overnight unless you're using canned beans*. Check out this post for canned equivalents and directions on cooking beans from scratch.
- In a large stock pot, heat the oil over medium heat. Add the onions and saute until translucent.
- In the meantime, prep the chard. I like to tear the leaves from the pretty stems. Then I chop the stems in the same way that I would chop celery. I find it faster to just tear the leaves until smaller pieces, but feel free to use a knife if you prefer.
- Once the onions are softened, add the celery and the chard stems to the pot. Cook for another 4-5 minutes over medium.
- Add the garlic and spices to the pot and cook until you can smell the spices, just about 30-60 seconds or so.
- Add the beans and stock. Bring to a boil, and then simmer for about an hour and a half. Check on it periodically. If it gets too thick, add some water or make stock if you have it to thin it out.
- Test the beans for doneness. When they're done, add the tomatoes and chard leaves. Bring heat back up to medium for about five minutes.
- Salt and pepper to taste.
- Serve with freshly grated Parmesan and fresh parsley if you have it.
*Alternately, if you have frozen beans that are already cooked (per this post) or if you're using canned beans, cut the stock down to two cups and dump the beans in at the same time.
A Sara by the Season original.