I needed soup again and so I hit the grocery store for some quick stock and protein and pulled together this great soup. I made enough for two portions in the freezer, one dinner and one lunch and it all took less then 30 minutes.
Soup is so great when you are trying to eat healthy. It gives you that great comfort food feeling without a cream based pasta or a risotto. Plus you can really cram in the vegetables.
It also gave me an excuse to make faro which I have never cooked before. It was great in this soup, very similar to a barley and much easier to cook then rice because you cook it like pasta (boil in salted water for 20 minutes).
[print_this]Butter Bean, Fennel Seed, and Vegetable Soup
2T olive oil
1t fennel seeds, crushed
1 small dried red chile
1 large carrot, cut into bite size pieces
1 stalk celery, cut into bite size pieces
1 small or 1/2 large zucchini, cut into bite size pieces
1 small potato, washed and small dice
salt and pepper
1/2 green pepper, cut into bite size pieces
1 large can of tomatoes
1C chicken or vegetable stock
1/2C cooked faro (or rice or barley)
1 small can of butter beans, drained and rinsed
2 handfuls of spinach
In a large soup pot heat oil to medium heat and add fennel and chile, stir until fragrant then add celery, carrot, and zucchini and a pinch of salt. Saute for 5 minute then add potatoes and peppers for a minute or two more.
Add tomatoes and liquid and break up gently. Add chicken stock and bring mixture to a gentle simmer, cook until potatoes are soft then stir in beans, spinach, and faro. Taste and correct for seasoning and serve.[/print_this]