Last night I had a dream that I looked out the window to see the trees blooming with a million pink buds. Then I woke up and all the branches were still bare and surrounded by piles of gray snow.
I’m pretty sure I’m making it up but I feel an almost imperceivable shift toward spring. It’s coming, oh please oh please let it be coming.
I was telling my sister yesterday that I’m feeling uninspired in the kitchen lately. This is likely because I’m sick of winter vegetables. Don’t get me wrong, I love sweet potatoes and carrots and parsnips but what I’d really like to eat are some lovely green asparagus stalks that don’t cost $5.99 a bunch! Or some sweet, red tomatoes that haven’t been imported from Brazil.
Guess we’ll have to make do with what we have right now. And what we have are white beans and kale! The pairing of white beans and kale seems almost as natural as peanut butter and jelly.
Actually it doesn’t at all but it does sound good together. So we’ll make another soup with hopes that it’s one of the last of the season and that soon we’ll be turning our attention to fresh salads and fruit.
Kale, Potato and White Bean End of Winter Soup (vegan, gluten-free)
2 tbsp garlic infused olive oil (or regular olive oil)
1 onion, diced
1 carrot, sliced
2 celery stalks, diced
2 tbsp minced garlic
1/2 cup of loosely packed basil, cut into ribbons (optional)
1 tsp dried thyme
1/2-1 tsp salt
1/8 tsp cayenne pepper
1 bay leaf
8 cups of water and two no salt bouillon cubes (or 8 cups of no salt veggie stock)
6 red potatoes, diced
2 cans of white beans with juices (I used a combo of great northern and white kidney beans)
3 cups chopped kale (I used curly but lacinato would work well here too)
Slice onion, carrot, celery and potatoes.
Heat olive oil and saute onion, carrot and celery until lightly soft. Add garlic and basil. Saute for another minute.
Add thyme, salt, cayenne pepper and bay leaf. Mix with veggies.
Next add water and bouillon cubes. I always use no salt bouillon cubes but it’s especially important here because I’m not draining the beans and the juice of the beans adds extra salt.
Bring to a boil then reduce to a simmer.
Add beans and potatoes cook for 25 minutes.
Lastly, add kale. Cook until wilted.
Adjust salt to taste and remove bay leaf before serving.
I turned the burner off and left the soup covered on the stove while I taught my noon class and went to the gym. When I ate it a couple of hours later it reminded me very much of the soups my dad used to make, which made it taste that much better.
If we have to eat more soup, might as well be good soup right?
Enjoy and Exhale!