The Good News Soup preserves almost all of the water-soluble vitamins in beans like folic acid and niacin.
Plus: More Soup Recipes and Tips
1 1/4 cups dried cannellini beans ( 1/2 pound), soaked overnight or quick-soaked and drained
1 head of escarole (1 pound), cored
1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
1 small celery rib, finely chopped
1 bay leaf
One 16-ounce can whole tomatoes, chopped, juices reserved
2 tablespoons chopped parsley
1 garlic clove, thinly sliced
1 teaspoon chopped marjoram
1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper
Grilled peasant bread, for serving
How to Make It
In a medium saucepan, cover the beans with 2 inches of water and bring to a boil. Simmer over moderately low heat, stirring occasionally, until tender, about 2 hours. Keep adding water as necessary so the beans are always submerged in 1 inch of water. Remove them from the heat and season with salt.
Meanwhile, in a large saucepan of boiling salted water, cook the escarole for 3 minutes. Drain and coarsely chop.
Heat the olive oil in a large saucepan. Add the celery and bay leaf and cook over low heat until the celery is softened, about 5 minutes. Add the beans, their cooking liquid, tomatoes and their juices and simmer over moderate heat for 3 minutes. Add the escarole and simmer for 5 minutes. Discard the bay leaf. Season with salt and stir in the parsley, garlic, marjoram and crushed red pepper. Add a piece of grilled bread to each bowl, ladle in the soup and serve.
Quick-Soaking for Dried Beans Rinse the beans, then transfer to a saucepan and cover with water. Boil for 2 minutes, then remove from the heat, cover and let stand for 1 hour; drain.