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Magical Beans

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Have you heard of author Shauna Niequist or her books Cold Tangerines or Bittersweet? I like this girl a lot. I don’t know her at all, but I really, really like her. I know that might sound crazy, but read her books. She’s amazing. And she loves to cook… and eat… and write. Now, can you see why I like her so much?

She posted a recipe on her blog called Magical White Bean Soup. Since it has “magical” in the name I had to try it. It is silky smooth and perfectly filling on a cold March day that begs for spring to show its face. Plus, it’s extremely healthy and economical (yay for beans, right?!).

Magical White Bean Soup
from Shauna Niequist

2 shallots, sliced
1/2 lb carrots, sliced into thin coins on a diagonal
1 bulb fennel, sliced
4 celery ribs, sliced on a diagonal
6 cans white beans in liquid
1 tbsp rosemary, rough chopped
Salt and pepper to taste

In a stockpot or Dutch oven, soften two sliced shallots in olive oil over medium heat.
Add carrots, fennel, and celery, and allow to soften 10-15 minutes.
Add beans in their liquid and chopped rosemary.
Cover and cook for 20 minutes at a gentle boil.
Taste, add salt & pepper, taste again—and keep in mind that you’ll get a good amount of salt from the toppings.
Cook for 20 more minutes, or longer if you have time. Off heat, mash with a potato masher or the back of a wooden spoon for a rustic chunky texture. If you’d like a smoother texture, run it through a food processor or use an immersion blender in the pot.
For the balsamic vinaigrette, mix a spoonful of Dijon, a few tablespoons of balsamic, a quarter cup or so of olive oil, some salt and pepper in a glass jar, then shake well. Adjust to taste–I usually like 2:1 oil to vinegar and dijon.
Serve with a small pitcher of vinaigrette, and bowls of prosciutto torn into ribbons, grated Parmesan, and chopped rosemary.

Oh, and you should also check out this personality test on Shauna’s blog, The Enneagram. I love personality tests and this one’s a fun one. I’m a #4. What are you?

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