Creamy Pancetta White Bean Soup

When fall weather finally turns cool enough for soup, this is the dish you want to make. With the pancetta, kale and cream, it is certainly hearty and rich enough to be a main dish. Pair it with your favorite whole grain bread or rolls and you have a meal worthy of the season.
By / Photography By Sarah Seddon | September 15, 2015

Instructions

1. In a large, heavy-bottomed soup pot, fry pancetta over medium heat until crispy and golden brown, about 3–5 minutes.

2. Remove pancetta from pot, drain on a paper towel and reserve the pancetta.

3. Discard ¾ of the fat remaining in the pot, leaving 1 to 2 tablespoons.

4. Add diced onion to the pot and sauté until translucent and aromatic, about 3 minutes. Next, add mushrooms and continue to cook for another 3 minutes, or until mushrooms are golden brown and have released their moisture.

5. Add cooked beans, water and chicken broth, and reduce heat until soup maintains a gentle simmer. Toss in the thyme, kale and reserved pancetta and allow mixture to simmer at least 5 minutes more.

6. Remove soup from heat and add in the heavy cream, stirring as you add it in. For best results, return the pot to the heat and allow the soup to sit on low heat for another 5 to 10 minutes to ensure the flavors have a chance to blend fully. Add salt and pepper as needed. Do not boil or the cream may separate.

Ingredients

  • 10 ounces cubed pancetta
  • 1 large red onion, diced
  • 8 ounces whole mushrooms, thinly sliced
  • 1½ cups cooked (¾ cup dried) or 1 (15-ounce) can white beans (Great Northern or cannellini beans)
  • 2 cups water
  • 1 cup chicken broth
  • 3–4 sprigs fresh thyme
  • ¾ cup kale, stemmed and roughly chopped
  • 1 cup heavy cream
  • Salt and pepper to taste

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