White Bean Soup with Rosemary and Garlic

A fast starter to a weeknight dinner!

Years ago I posted a recipe white bean soup, but today’s version is quicker, easier and even more deliciousier to make. No need to drain nor rinse the beans. Chop an onion, then smash and run garlic thru with a blade a few times. You are now halfway to weeknight soup!

White Bean Soup with Rosemary and Garlic
Adapted from: https://www.inspiredtaste.net/4077/white-bean-soup/
Yield: 4 servings

Note: use vegetable broth and vegan "bacon" bits for a vegan version

2 Tbl. olive oil
1 medium onion, chopped (about 2/3 cup)
2 garlic cloves (up to 4 if you love garlic), smashed with the side of a knife, then chopped
1/2 tsp. crushed red pepper flakes (plus add’l to taste)
1 Tbl. chopped fresh rosemary (about 1 large sprig) or 1 tsp. dried
1 bay leaf
2 (15 oz.) cans cannellini beans (white kidney beans), low-sodium preferred, undrained
2 to 2 1/2 cups chicken or vegetable broth, divided
1/4 tsp. coarsely ground black pepper (plus additional to taste)
2 Tbl. dry sherry (optional)
Kosher salt, to taste
1 Tbl. finely snipped chives, handful of croutons, and/or Bacon-type bits (real or vegan) for garnish

Heat olive oil in a 4-quart sauce pot over medium heat. Add onions and garlic; and sauté constantly until onions are translucent and softened, about 5 minutes. Stir in red pepper flakes, rosemary and bay leaf; sauté for an additional minute.

Add the beans with their liquid, 2 cups of the chicken (or veggie) broth, and black pepper; increase heat to medium-high and let come to a boil. Reduce heat to a simmer. Cook, uncovered, for 10 minutes.

Remove pot from heat; remove and discard bay leaf. Using an immersion blender, process until smooth (you can also use a regular blender or food processor). If soup is too thick, thin with up to 1/2 cup additional broth.

Taste soup; stir in sherry (if using), and adjust if desired with salt, black pepper, and/or additional red pepper flakes.

Ladle into soup bowls; garnish evenly with chives, croutons and/or bacon bits, if desired, just before serving.