1/4 pound large diced pancetta or bacon (optional – sub Parmesan rind in the broth)
2 cups diced onions
1 cup diced carrots
1 cup diced fennel bulb (or sub celery)
4 – 6 cloves garlic- rough chopped
1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes, more to taste
2 teaspoons salt, plus more to taste
2–3 medium tomatoes – diced (or 1 can diced tomatoes)
6 cups chopped lacinato kale
Splash white wine
6 cups chicken stock, preferably homemade (or use veggie stock)
3 cups cooked cannellini beans – or use 2 cans cannellini beans (drained, minced), or great northern white beans
1/2 cup chopped fresh Italian parsley leaves
Grated pecorino or Parmesan – optional
Rosemary Lemon Garlic Oil-
½ cup good olive oil
zest of one large lemon
4 cloves garlic, sliced
few sprigs rosemary (or thyme, sage)
Make the Lemon Garlic Rosemary Oil – place all ingredients in a small jar or bowl and let sit on the counter (or make the day before, refrigerating)
In a large, heavy bottom pot or dutch oven, heat oil over medium heat.
Add onions and pancetta and saute 6-8 minutes.
Lower heat to med-low and add the carrots, fennel (or celery) and garlic, salt, pepper and chili flakes, and cook another 7- 9 minutes, until vegetables are tender.
Add the tomatoes and lacinato kale, and a splash of white wine, and continue sauteing and stirring occasionally for 7-8 minutes.
Add the stock and beans.
NOTE: If you like a thicker soup, blend or puree 1 cup of the beans with a little of the stock, to thicken the soup. Or, thicken it with day-old bread, torn into small pieces and cooked with the broth. (I prefer a brothier version of this soup, so I skip this part and serve with toasty bread on the side instead.)
Bring to soup to boil, turn heat down and simmer for 15 minutes.
You could add a Parmesan rind to the simmering soup for extra depth of flavor.
Stir in fresh Italian Parsley.
Adjust salt if necessary.
Serve in bowls with a drizzle of the flavorful lemon oil, grated Parmesan ( or Romano) and crusty bread.
Keywords: Ribollita, White bean soup, tuscan white bean soup, tuscan white bean stew, ribollita recipe, italian white bean soup