Sunday, September 19, 2010

Soupe au Pistou (Pistou Soup)

This is the third recipe from's French Food at Home. I really enjoy Laura Calder's show and I have an endless list of recipes of hers I'd like to make. I like that her dishes look appetizing and are usually fairly easy to make. She also has a bit of quirky personality that I enjoy.

For this soup, I spied fresh cranberry beans at the farmer's market. I just couldn't resist buying them and figuring out what to make later. With basil in abundance in the garden, making pesto for soupe au pistou seemed like a perfect idea.

Soupe au Pistou

Soupe au Pistou (Pistou Soup) - Makes 6 servings
From French Food at Home.

* 1 tablespoon olive oil
* 1 onion, chopped
* 1 cup green beans, cut into ½-inch pieces
* 1 potato, peeled and diced
* 1 cup carrots, diced
* salt and pepper, to taste
* 4 cups vegetable broth or water
* 1 bay leaf
* 1 sprig thyme
* 1 cup fresh beans or cooked beans of your choice
* 1 cup zucchini, diced small
* 2 tomatoes, seeded, and diced
* pesto, homemade or store-bought, for garnish
* Parmesan cheese, for garnish

Heat the oil in a sauté pan and gently cook the onion until translucent, about 5 minutes.
Add the green beans, potato, carrots and beans (if uncooked).
Pour the vegetable broth or water.
Season with salt and pepper, add the bay leaf and the thyme.
Bring to a boil, and simmer 10 minutes.
Add the zucchini (and the beans if you are using cooked or canned beans) and continue cooking until all the vegetables are tender, about 10 minutes longer.
Stir through the tomato.
Ladle the soup into bowls.
(Remove the bay leaf and thyme sprigs).
Add a spoonful (or more!) of pesto to each bowl.

Roma Beans Roma beans shelled

While the pesto is only a garnish, it is a defining ingredient in this soup. I thought it added a whole lot of flavour. Without it, the soup was a bit of a bland vegetable soup. I loved the fresh creamy beans in the soup.

Soupe au Pistou

Other Laura Calder (French Food at Home) recipes:
* Cauliflower Salad
* Goat Cheese stuffed Mushrooms
* Moelleux au Chocolat (Molten Chocolate Cake)

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