SOUPer Sunday – Kale and Bean Soup

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Kale and Bean Soup fresh from the freezer!

Watching Top Chef the other night, there was a challenge involving food fads that may or may not have worn out their welcome. Among the fads were kale and bacon. I’m going to go ahead and say we can all probably stop trying to make a bacon version of every dessert on our menu. It does work in a few, but not all.

As for kale, I love it! Always have and will continue to eat and serve it in salad, roasted, wilted…

You will find both kale and bacon present in this recipe.

I made a big batch of this soup last month and froze half of it. With the crisp chill in the air finally requiring a long sleeve shirt this weekend, I thawed it out, added some spicy sausage and just like that it’s a whole new soup!

Feel free to add the sausage to the base soup from the beginning. You could also add roasted chicken for another change of pace.

I used dried beans, but you can use canned, just be sure to rinse and drain them. You won’t need to cook the soup as long then either, just 20-30 minutes or so.

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Kale and Bean Soup

1 bag dried Cannellini or Great Northern beans
5 pieces thick cut bacon, diced
1 medium onion, chopped
2 quarts chicken broth
2 cups water
1 bag of chopped kale
salt and pepper

Rinse beans, then place in pan, cover with water and soak beans overnight.
Drain when ready to make soup.

Heat large dutch over or deep saucepan over med-high heat. Add 1 TB olive oil and bacon. Cook until bacon is  crisp and fat is rendered. Add onion, cook until translucent. Add salt and pepper to taste. Add beans, broth, water and kale.
Bring to a low boil.
Cover and cook on low heat for 90 minutes to 2 hours until beans are tender.

Freeze half for later.

This soup reheats terrifically.
Change it up by adding some sausage.

Heat a pan over med-high heat.

Add a bit if olive oil to the pan, add 1/2 pound or more of Italian sausage – hot or sweet. I used hot, but either works great. Cook the sausage breaking it up into small pieces as it cooks.
When cooked through, add thawed soup and heat through.

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