Imagine the ultimate soup of the season, stocked with vegetables, rich flavor, and our favorite, EVOO. Stay warm and cozy with this Soupe au Pistou recipe, perfect for the cooler evenings with your family!
Soupe au Pistou
Recipe and photography by Christopher Kimball's Milk Street
8 oz dried pinto beans
kosher salt and ground black pepper
1 pint cherry tomatoes
1 medium leek, white and light green parts only, quartered lengthwise and thinly sliced
1 medium head of garlic, top 1/3 of head cut off and discarded, plus 5 medium garlic cloves smashed and peeled
2 bay leaves
1 teaspoon dried thyme
1 oz fresh basil
1 oz parmesan, roughly chopped
2 tablespoons pine nuts
4 oz small pasta, such as elbows
1 medium carrot, peeled and chopped into 1/2 inch pieces
1 small zucchini, chopped into 1/2 inch pieces
In a large bowl, combine the beans with 8 cups water and 1 tablespoon salt. Stir, then let soak at room temperature for at least 12 hours or up to 24 hours.
Drain the beans and add them to a large pot along with the tomatoes, leek, garlic head, bay, thyme and 9 cups water. Bring to a boil over medium-high, then reduce to medium and cook, uncovered, stirring occasionally and adjusting heat to maintain a simmer, until the beans are tender, 45-55 minutes.
Meanwhile, in a food processor, combine the basil, Parmesan, 2 tablespoons of oil, the garlic cloves, pine nuts and ½ teaspoon salt. Process until the mixture has a spreadable consistency, 30 to 60 seconds, scraping the bowl as needed. Transfer the pistou to a small bowl and set aside.
In a small saucepan over medium, head the remaining 1 tablespoon olive oil until shimmering, Add the pasta and cook, stirring often, until toasted, about 3 minutes. Remove from the heat and set aside.
To the beams, add the carrot, 4 teaspoons salt and ½ teaspoon pepper. Continue to cook, stirring occasionally, until the carrots are barely tender, 5 to 7 minutes. Stir in the toasted pasta and zucchini, then continue to cook until the pasta and zucchini are tender, 6 to 10 minutes.
Remove and discard the bay. Using tongs, remove the garlic head from the pot and squeeze the base of the head to release the cloves into the pot. Using the tongs, gently squeeze any tomatoes that are still whole so they burst. Taste the soup and season with salt and pepper. Ladle the soup into bowls. Swirl 1 tablespoon of pistou into each, serve with remaining pistou on the side.
Recipe and photography courtesy of Christopher Kimball's Milk Street