Wednesday, December 26, 2007

White Bean and Escarole Soup

White Bean and Escarole Soup
Chef Scott Conant of L'Impero – New York, NY
Adapted by StarChefs

Yield: 6 to 8 Servings

     1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil
     1 onion cut into large pieces
     3 whole cloves garlic
     1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper
     2 sprigs fresh rosemary
     2 sprigs fresh sage
     6 ounces pancetta, left in big pieces
     2 cups dried white beans, such as cannellini or cranberry beans, rinsed, soaked in water for 24 hours, and drained
     3 quarts homemade or low-sodium purchased chicken broth
     Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
     1 head escarole, shredded (about 3 cups)

In a large soup pot, heat half of the olive oil over medium heat. Add the onion and cook until translucent, about 5 minutes. Add the garlic, crushed red pepper, rosemary, sage, and pancetta. Cook, stirring occasionally, for about 5 minutes to allow the flavors to develop. Add the drained beans and chicken stock. Bring the liquid to a boil, reduce to a gentle simmer, and cook until the beans are tender, 1 1/2 to 2 hours.

With a slotted spoon, transfer the herbs, pancetta, and onion pieces, as well as about half of the beans, to a rimmed baking sheet. Pick out some of the pancetta and chop it for a garnish. Discard all but the beans. Puree the removed beans with about 2 Tablespoons of olive oil and some salt and pepper; return puree to the pot. Add the shredded escarole and cook until wilted. Taste and add additional salt and pepper if needed. Serve soup in warm bowls with reserved chopped pancetta and an additional drizzle of olive oil.

Wine Pairing:
A full, spicy Tuscan white such as the Antinori Tenuta Guado al Tasso Vermentino 2002


No comments: