A recipe to use up what you might have thrown out!
By Brittney MacDonald, Life & Style Editor
1 cup borlotti beans (soak for four hours prior)
8 cups vegetable stock
5 cloves garlic, crushed
1 ½ white onions, chopped
½ white onion, peeled (don’t cut it up)
6 slices stale bread, preferably Texas toast style.
¼ cup olive oil
2 carrots, chopped
1 tsp. red pepper flakes
1 bay leaf
½ tsp. rosemary
1 tsp. sage
1 tsp. thyme
½ tsp. parsley
½ cup dry white wine
1 bunch dinosaur kale, chopped
3 cups cabbage, cored and chopped
2 cups tomato purée
1 small red onion, minced
1 rind from real parmesan cheese, as well as a little bit of the cheese to grate over your soup
I will confess I’m not the best chef. But even I know that it’s not good to let food go to waste. As many of us are struggling to afford tuition, books, and rent, it’s important to find ways of using up the food we have, even if it might not be the freshest anymore. One trick I found is that instead of just making croutons out of stale bread—like what I’ve been doing for far too many years—you can actually use it to make a hearty soup!
Begin by draining your beans and adding them to a pot of four cups of vegetable stock. Add two cloves of the crushed garlic and the ½ an onion you didn’t chop up. Throw in a couple dashes of salt and pepper before bringing the pot to a boil. Once it boils, quickly set it to simmer and leave it for 30 minutes.
In the meantime, preheat your oven to 350 F. Tear your bread into uneven chunks, approximately 2 ½ cm in size. Bake bread chunks in the oven ‘til golden brown/toasted. This shouldn’t take long. Once finished, wrap the bread in tin foil and set it aside.
Heat the olive oil in a Dutch oven on medium-high heat, coating the base of it before adding in the carrots, chopped onions, red pepper flakes, bay leaf, rosemary, thyme, sage, and parsley. Put the lid to the Dutch oven partially on, leaving a small vent so steam can escape. Allow that to cook for about five minutes.
Once the carrots and onions have softened a bit, add the kale, wine, and cabbage. Stir everything up, before partially covering it once more and leaving it for another five minutes, allowing the greens to wilt.
Once done, add the bean pot to the Dutch oven, including all the liquid. Stir in the tomato purée, and add two more cups of vegetable stock as well as the cheese rind. Bring the pot to a boil before setting it to simmer for 15 minutes.
If you have a food processor or blender, remove about three cups of the beans and veggies and purée them before adding them back into the Dutch oven. You can skip this step if you want.
At this time, if you made this super early, cool and store the pot till about 30 minutes before you plan to serve it. If not, just continue on.
For serving, reheat over medium-high heat if you have to, or just add the bread, allowing it to soak up some of the broth. Add the remaining two cups of vegetable stock and remove the bay leaf and cheese rind.
Heat to your desired temperature then ladle into bowls. Top it off with minced red onions, grated parmesan cheese, and a drizzle of olive oil.