Italian Vegetable Soup

This Tuscan specialty is really lovely. I make it with everything: during the summer, fresh fava beans make a most delicious soup; in cooler weather, dried cannellini beans.

Makes 4-5 Servings

Ingredient List: 

1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
1 cup dried cannellini beans, rinsed well
1 to 2 cloves fresh garlic, finely minced
1 onion, cut into large dice
4 cups spring or filtered water
1 bay leaf
¼ cup mirin or white wine
Sea salt
Juice of 1 lemon
1 pound fresh or frozen green peas
3 or 4 leaves of kale, finely chopped

Step By Step Instructions: 

Heat oil in a soup pot over medium-low heat. Add beans and cook, stirring, 1 to 2 minutes. Stir in garlic and onion. Add water and bay leaf and bring to a boil. Add mirin, cover and cook over low heat until beans are soft, about 1 hour. Season lightly with salt and simmer 10 minutes more. Remove from heat and stir in lemon juice, peas and kale. Serve hot.