White Bean and Escarole Soup

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  • Total: 50 min
  • Prep: 20 min
  • Cook: 30 min
  • Yield: 6 servings
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2 tablespoons olive oil

2 ounces pancetta or prosciutto cut into 1/4-inch cubes

1/2 cup diced onion

4 cloves garlic, minced

1 teaspoon minced rosemary or thyme

1/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes

1 head escarole, (about 1 pound) trimmed, washed, and coarsely chopped

Two 15 ounce cans cannellini beans, rinsed and drained

1 cup peeled, seeded, and chopped vine-ripened tomato or chopped canned plum tomato

5 cups chicken broth, homemade or low-sodium canned

1 teaspoon kosher salt plus more

Freshly ground black pepper


  1. Serving suggestions:
  2. Drizzle each serving with extra-virgin olive oil and/or sprinkle with freshly grated Parmesan and serve with a good crusty bread.
  3. In a soup pot, heat the oil over medium heat, add the pancetta, and saute for about 5 minutes. Remove meat with a slotted spoon and set aside. Add the onion and saute until golden, about 10 minutes. Add the garlic, rosemary, and pepper flakes; saute for 3 minutes more. Add the escarole, stirring for 2 minutes more. Add the beans, tomato, broth, and salt to taste; bring to a boil. Lower the heat to maintain a gentle simmer, cover, and cook for 10 to 15 minutes. Stir in the reserved pancetta and season with salt and pepper to taste. Serve with the oil and/or cheese and the crusty bread. Cook's note: Swiss chard is a welcome substitute for the escarole.
  4. Copyright 2001 Television Food Network, G.P. All rights reserved.