Wednesday, June 24, 2009

The Russian Front

The farmer's market this week had some interesting finds, including the nicest looking Russian kale I've ever seen. Well, the only Russian kale I've ever seen. I had to have it. Then came the obvious dilemma - what to do with it.

I decided soup. Soup seems to be the easiest way for me to test out new things, to mix their flavors with old familiars, maybe creating new familiars in the process.

If you don't have Russian kale handy, any kale will do.

Bean and Russian Kale Soup

1 large bunch Russian kale (about 1 1/2 cups), chopped
2 small carrots, diced
1 celery stalk, diced
2 tsp. fresh thyme, chopped
1 tsp. fresh parsley, chopped
1 can Great Northern beans (or your favorite), drained and rinsed
1/2 can diced tomatoes or better yet, 1 fresh tomato, diced
2 cups vegetable broth
salt and pepper to taste
1/4 cup parmesan cheese

In a soup pot, heat a scant amount of cooking spray. Add celery and carrots and saute, adding water to keep the lot from burning and to keep the fat low. Cook about 4 minutes. Add beans and kale and stir. Then add the remaining ingredients and cook about 20 minutes, covered, until all is soft. Place in bowls and sprinkle with cheese.

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