White Bean Soup with Kale

January 2013

We started our new season of Healthy Team Healthy U this week. It is a 12 week course where you form a group and make your way through a workbook giving you tools to become healthier. When you’ve successfully completed the course you get a 5% discount on your health insurance premium and a $100 cash bonus ($200 last year). There are many resources including lots of recipes. One of the recipes that caught my eye was white bean and kale soup. Their recipe was made with canned beans and vegetable broth. I thought I might be able to get a lot of birds with one stone:

  • Use my liquid gold home made chicken broth.
  • Make progress on my goal to eat all the different colored beans this year (I got red beans last week).
  • Get practice with my pressure cooker.
  • Eat something healthy
You can find my recipe here.

I started out on Saturday by whipping out some pressure cooker chicken stock and brining some beans. Sunday morning we went to church then I went swimming, came home and watched some football. One of the great thing about the pressure cooker is you don’t have to spend all day cooking your beans – it only takes 30 minutes.

A small ingredient set; I’m used to Cook’s Illustrated recipe with a bajillion steps and ingredients. This marked my first time cooking kale – a tough leafy vegetable.

Beans, kale, vegetables, spices, and chicken stock

As I said the kale is tough. I pulled the leaves off the stems, then chopped the stems and tore the leaves into bite size pieces.

Mis en place.  Chopped kale stems were added to the mirepoix
Sauté the mirepoix

After the sautéing the vegetables and herbs for a few minutes, I added the beans and 2 quarts of chicken stock, then cooked on high pressure for 25 minutes (actually 20 minutes + 5 minutes).

Cook the beans under high pressure for 25 minutes

Then after doing a quick release of pressure I added the tomatoes and kale leaves and cooked for another 5 minutes under high pressure before once again quickly releasing the pressure.

Beans are cooking. Kale and tomatoes are waiting their turn

Served with a glass of wine and corn bread.

Dinner is served

The verdict: good enough for company. If you don’t want to go to the trouble of making your own chicken broth (it really isn’t difficult), it would be fine with a nice brand of canned broth.

Hey look at that; I cooked something without bacon!

Rating: ★★4 out of 5 stars.

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