This is a hearty, comforting soup, the kind of soup, like the Italian minestrone, you make with whatever vegetables you have in your kitchen. Mostly, it combines beans, in this case giant lima beans; stir fried garlic, onions and celery, plus carrots and seasoned with parsley, bay leaves and black pepper.
This minestra may be vegetarian or have some meat. I chose some smoked bacon. Some people cook it with pasta or rice. The bean broth is thick and the carbohydrates provided by the beans make this soup a very fulfilling one and a meal by itself.
I love it for cold days like today, when you sit by the fire place and can have a bowl that will keep you warm.
Giant Lima Bean Soup | Ingredients for 6 portions
1 pound of giant lima beans
2 quarts of water
¼ of pound of frozen smoked bacon finely chopped
1 yellow onion finely chopped
2 garlic cloves minced
½ red bell pepper finely chopped
4 parsley sprigs
2 medium carrots finely diced
2 celery stalks finely diced
Coarse sea salt
Freshly ground black pepper
In a stock pan over medium heat, add the water and the lentils and cook for 30 minutes. In a saucepan over medium heat place the bacon and cook stirring constantly about 3 minutes. Add the onions, garlic and parsley and cook until the onions are translucent, 5 minutes. Add the red pepper, carrots and celery and cook for 5 minutes. Add the bacon and the vegetable mix to the beans. Season with salt and pepper and simmer until the beans are tender, 10 to 15 more minutes.
To print the recipe click here.