Monday, January 2, 2012

Do You Know This Beautiful Leaf?


It's Swiss chard! Next to spinach, Swiss chard is among one of the healthiest foods around. In fact, Swiss chard is recommended to treat osteoporosis and Alzheimer's disease! If you've never tried it, I recommend you do! This is "red Swiss chard," but it also comes in "rainbow," how beautiful! I always think of this lovely soup when I want to balance extravagant eating, like during the holidays. This delicious soup, full of shallots, pancetta, cannellini beans, Swiss chard, and cheese tortellini, is easy and just what you need to get back on track! It's so good, you'll be surprised!


Italian White Bean, Pancetta, and Tortellini Soup

Serves 4-6

Ingredients:

3 tablespoons olive oil
4 ounces pancetta, chopped
3 large shallots, chopped
1 carrot, peeled and chopped
2 garlic cloves, chopped
1, 15 ounce can cannellini beans, rinsed and drained
4 cups chopped Swiss chard (about 1 bunch)
6 cups low-sodium chicken broth
1, 9 ounce package cheese tortellini, fresh or frozen (recommended: Buitoni)
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

Directions:

In a large, heavy soup pot, heat the olive oil over medium-high heat. Add the pancetta, shallots, carrot, and garlic and cook until the pancetta is crisp, about 5 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add the beans, Swiss chard, and broth.

Bring the soup to a boil over medium-high heat, then reduce the heat to a simmer. Add the tortellini and cook 5 minutes for fresh, 8 minutes for frozen, or until just tender. Season with pepper and serve. A crusty baguette is just perfect on the side!

Recipe from Everyday Pasta, by Giada De Laurentiis.

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