Tuscan White Bean Soup
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 onion, finely chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced
2 carrots, peeled and diced
2 celery stalks, diced
1 teaspoon dried thyme
1 teaspoon dried rosemary
1 can (15 ounces) cannellini beans, drained and rinsed
4 cups vegetable broth
1 bay leaf
Salt and pepper, to taste
2 cups fresh spinach or kale, chopped
Juice of 1 lemon
Grated Parmesan cheese (optional, for garnish)
Fresh parsley, chopped (for garnish)
In a large pot, heat the olive oil over medium heat. Add the chopped onion, minced garlic, diced carrots, and diced celery. Sauté for about 5 minutes, or until the vegetables are softened.
Add the dried thyme and rosemary to the pot. Stir to combine and let the herbs release their flavors for about a minute.
Add the drained and rinsed cannellini beans to the pot. Stir to mix with the vegetables and herbs.
Pour in the vegetable broth and add the bay leaf.
Season with salt and pepper to taste. Stir everything together.
Bring the soup to a boil, then reduce the heat to low, cover, and let it simmer for about 20-25 minutes, or until the vegetables are tender.
Remove the bay leaf from the soup and discard it.
Add the chopped fresh spinach or kale to the pot. Stir and cook until the greens wilt, which should take just a couple of minutes.
Stir in the lemon juice to brighten up the flavors.
Taste the soup and adjust the seasoning with more salt and pepper if needed.
Serve the Tuscan white bean soup hot, garnished with grated Parmesan cheese (if desired) and a sprinkle of fresh parsley.