Seriously, if you are looking for an incredibly easy soup that is loaded with flavor then look no further than this Tuscan Bean Soup with Croutons and Pancetta. Talk about easy, few ingredients and ridiculously tasty, this has it all. It’s funny because as a chef, and often people in the food industry, can get so tangled in to the more ingredients and flavors the better. Even I get sucked into it at times. However, nothing is more satisfying then tasting something that is really really good and has few ingredients in it. After making this Tuscan Bean Soup with Croutons and Pancetta it really kind of lit a fire under my rear to simplify things, and that more ingredients don’t mean better results. Soup is one of my favorite things to make and eat and honestly I think I will start taking this few ingredient approach :-).
A nice big Pinterest picture below, you know what to do with it :-).
Tuscan Bean Soup with Croutons and Pancetta
- 4 ounces of chopped pancetta
- 1 small diced onion
- 3 finely minced cloves of garlic
- 3 small diced stalks of celery
- 3 cups of dried Northern beans
- 48 ounces of chicken stock
- 1 Parmesan rind
- 4 cups of cubed French bread
- 3 ounces of melted unsalted butter
- Kosher salt and fresh cracked pepper to taste
- fresh oregano and sage leaves for garnish
Place the beans in a pot and cover them with cold water. Make sure the water is 3 to 4 inches above the beans and let them sit over night.
In a large pot on high heat, add in the chopped pancetta and render the fat. Once the pancetta is crispy, remove the lardons and set aside.
Next, add in the onions, garlic and celery and caramelize.
Once brown, add in the beans, Parmesan rind and stock and simmer on low heat for 1 to 2 hours or until the beans are tender.
In a bowl toss together the melted butter, cubed French bread, and salt and pepper, and then spread them out on a sheet pan lined with parchment paper. Bake them in the oven on 350° for 15 minutes or until brown and crispy.
When the soup is finished, adjust the seasonings with salt and pepper and serve with the croutons and fresh herbs.