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Tuscan Kale, White Bean, and Ciabatta Soup

Total Time
6 hrs 30 mins

Day-old bread thickens this soup from Cathy Whims of Nostrana in Portland, giving it a custardy texture. The soup has a spicy kick, so cut back on the chile flakes if you’d prefer a milder flavor.

su-Tuscan Kale, White Bean, and Ciabatta Soup

Photo: Yunhee Kim; Styling: Robyn Valarik
 1 cup dried white beans such as Corona* or cannellini
 2 to 2 1/2 qts. reduced-sodium chicken broth
 10 garlic cloves, crushed, divided
 10 fresh sage leaves
 1/2 teaspoon red chile flakes, divided
  About 1/2 tsp. kosher salt
 2 bunches (1 lb.) Tuscan kale, stems and coarse ribs removed
  About 1/3 cup extra-virgin olive oil
 1 tablespoon chopped fresh rosemary leaves
 4 anchovy fillets, finely chopped
 6 ounces day-old ciabatta bread, crusts trimmed, torn into 1 1/2-in. pieces
 1/2 teaspoon pepper
  About 1/2 cup grated pecorino cheese
Step 1

Soak beans in a bowl with water to cover at least 4 hours (at least 6 hours if using Corona) or overnight. Drain, put in a 5- to 6-qt. pot, and add 2 qts. broth, 6 garlic cloves, the sage, and 1/4 tsp. chile flakes. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat and simmer until tender, 40 to 80 minutes, adding 1/2 tsp. salt during last 15 minutes.

Step 2

Fill another large pot about three-quarters full of water and bring to a boil over high heat. Submerge kale and boil gently until tender, 10 to 15 minutes. Drain, then coarsely chop.

Step 3

Heat 1/3 cup oil over medium heat in pot used for kale. Chop remaining 4 garlic cloves and add to pot with remaining 1/4 tsp. chile flakes and the rosemary; sauté until garlic is fragrant, about 2 minutes. Add anchovies and kale and cook a few more minutes. Stir in beans and their liquid. Cover and bring to a boil, then reduce heat and simmer 10 minutes. Remove from heat.

Step 4

Stir bread into soup with pepper and salt to taste. Cover and let stand until bread is very soft, 20 minutes to 1 hour.

Step 5

Reheat soup over medium heat until steaming, adding more broth if you'd like a looser texture. Ladle into bowls and add pecorino and a drizzle of oil.

Step 6

*Get Corona beans (large, plump white beans) from

Step 7

Note: Nutritional analysis is per serving.

Nutrition Facts

Amount Per Serving
Calories 396Calories from Fat 40
% Daily Value *
Total Fat 18g28%

Saturated Fat 4.7g24%
Cholesterol 50mg17%
Sodium 726mg31%
Total Carbohydrate 36g12%

Dietary Fiber 6.4g26%
Protein 24g48%

* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your daily value may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.