Tomato, White bean, and Kale soup

Do you ever make impulse purchases when grocery shopping?  I seem to do this at times but especially when I go to the store hungry, without a list, or occasionally when something tempting is on sale. Recently I purchased a 10 lb ham due to sale prices after the holidays.  I was attempting to be a thrifty shopper but really wasn’t thinking the purchase through all the way.  These facts should have clued me in that the purchase wasn’t a sound one:  that we have been eating less meat these days, that there are only two of us, and this may sound really silly since I purchased the thing, I really am not a lover of ham.  It is ok but really not my fave, my excuse is that I was thinking of Eric.  Cue, Ah!  Actually that was one of the reasons, but genes played a factor as well and the family trait of loving a deal was the deciding factor.  I just saw the sale price and like a milkshake through a straw, I was completely and quickly sucked in.

After cooking the 10 lb spiral cut beauty, and serving up our portions, we had a lot, more like a ton, of leftovers.  More than half of the leftover ham ended up in the freezer, about 1/4 of it was used for sandwiches, and I used some in this delicious soup.  This is a good use for leftover ham and a fantastic pantry recipe.  If your panty is like mine it always has stocks and broths, and a variety of canned and dried beans and legumes, and plenty of tomato products.  I utilized some of my frozen garden produce as well.  One of the ingredients in the soup is a roasted tomato sauce adapted from a Stonewall Kitchens recipe that I made using tomatoes from our garden and froze. Due to the plethora of tomatoes we had in August and September 2012, I still have a few containers of this delicious sauce.  All the flavors from onions, garlic, diced olives, and fennel seed which were roasted together prior to freezing had melded after a year or so of mingling, adding a lot of flavor to this soup.  You may substitute homemade crushed tomatoes, or next time tomatoes are in season whip up a batch which will yield, in my experience, 3-4 quarts.  Fresh kale, onions and garlic rounded out the ingredients and my favorite spice of late, smoked paprika added depth of flavor to the dish.  Leave out the ham for a tasty meatless monday soup.  I would suggest adding liquid smoke or worcestershire sauce to taste if leaving out the ham.  Do you impulse buy?  What is your favorite recipe that utilizes pantry items?

tomato, kale, white bean soup

Tomato, White bean, and Kale soup
Recipe by:
Cuisine: Soup
  • 2 onions diced
  • 6 cloves garlic minced
  • 1 cup diced cooked ham
  • 16 oz vegetable broth
  • 16 oz vegetable stock
  • 32 oz roasted tomato sauce
  • 1-14 oz fire roasted diced tomatoes
  • 2-14 oz cans cannellini beans
  • 1 large bunch kale (about 10 leaves)
  • 2 cups water
  • 2 tsp smoked sweet paprika
  • salt to taste
  • freshly ground black pepper
  • olive oil
  1. Place 1 tbsp of olive oil in dutch oven and heat over medium flame.
  2. Add diced onions and minced garlic to pan and sauté until onions soften.
  3. Add 1 cup diced cooked ham (not deli ham) and cook until onions start to caramelize.
  4. Add roasted tomato sauce, vegetable broth and stock, and diced canned tomatoes.
  5. Trim kale removing stalks and chop kale leaves.
  6. Wash kale thoroughly to remove any grit.
  7. Add kale to dutch oven and stir to combine.
  8. Cook over medium-low heat until kale has wilted and softened.
  9. Season with smoked sweet paprika, salt and pepper.
  10. Add 1-2 cups water to reach desired soup consistency.
  11. Drain and rinse cannelloni beans and add to soup.
  12. Heat through before serving.


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