Beans feature widely in Tuscan cuisine. This smooth comforting soup, in which beans are simmered for 2 hours, is quite simple to make. Garlic and parsley, stirred in just before serving, complement the flavour, and drizzle of olive oil adds the final touch.
- 175 g dry cannellini beans covered and soaked overnight in cold water
- 7 litres/ 3 pints chicken or vegetable stock
- 115g Nnova Rice Small Shells
- 6 tbsp olive oil
- 2 garlic cloves, chopped finely
- 4 tbsp chopped fresh flat-leaved parsley
- Salt and pepper
- Drain the soaked beans and place them in a large, heavy-based saucepan. Add the stock and bring to the boil. Partially cover the saucepan, lower the heat and simmer for 2 hours, until tender.
- Transfer about half the beans and a little of the stock to a food processor or blender and process to a smooth puree. Return the puree to the saucepan and stir well to mix. Bring the sup back to the boil.
- Add the pasta to the soup, bring back to the boil and cook for 10 minutes, until tender.
- Meanwhile, heat 4 tablespoons of the olive in a small saucepan. Add the garlic and cook over a low heat, stirring frequently, for 4-5 minutes, until golden. Stir the garlic into the soup and add the parsley.
- Season to taste with salt and pepper and ladle into warmed soup bowls. Drizzle with the remaining olive oil and serve immediately.