And just as I was getting caught up on blogging… life has caught up with me again. Ridiculous. I’ve been sitting on this soup for a week or so now. Summer is just busy. I cannot decide if this is a sign of my future life with older kids, or just a sign of summer. I suspect the former, which means I need to find a way to fit in sleep and blogging–those are the 2 activities most getting shortchanged!
Anyway, this soup. This is an unusual post for me because honestly the kids did not like this much, but John and I really did. I hemmed and hawed about whether to post it and then decided that I was being ridiculous. I think my kids hate white food. They react funny to most potato dishes too. But if you like bean soups, are not averse to white food, and like tomatoes, then this is a good soup for you. Be sure to make this soup with freshly picked, really ripe tomatoes–then it will really shine.
1 lb dried flageolet beans (or any other dried white bean)
1lb small red onions, quartered
6 garlic cloves, minced
drizzle of extra virgin olive oil
2 lbs medium-large tomatoes, cored and cut in half
1 lb cherry tomatoes
1 t sea salt
1 t sugar
1/2 cup good quality extra virgin olive oil
salt and pepper to taste
balsamic vinegar, decent quality
1/4 cup torn fresh basil leaves
I use good quality, fresh dried beans and as a result rarely soak. But if your beans need soaking, begin this recipe the night before by soaking the beans.
When I do soak, I like to cook the beans in the soaking water, but do to your preference. Either way, cover the beans in a large pot with water by 1-2 inches. Add the onions and the garlic with a drizzle of olive oil and bring to a rolling boil. Let boil for 5 minutes and then reduce the heat to low and cover to maintain a gentle simmer. When the beans are tender, salt to taste and let simmer an additional 10 minutes. Salt and pepper to taste again at the end. If desired, using an immersion blender, puree just a bit, to create a rustic, thicker stewlike texture (you can also ladle a cup or 2 into a blender and puree just it).
In the meantime, prepare the tomatoes. Preheat the oven to 500 F (or 475 F convection). Toss the tomatoes–both whole cherry and halved larger–with the salt, sugar and oil. Place in a shallow casserole dish or roasting pan. Roast, uncovered, until the cherry tomatoes are soft and slightly charred and the larger tomatoes are also charred in spots.
Serve by ladling the soup into a bowl and topping with tomatoes (make sure to include the flavorful extra virgin oil the tomatoes were roasted in). Garnish with torn basil leaves and a drizzle of balsamic vinegar.