A good-for-you French Stew

Health & Nutrition - - UPDATE -

In France, where Foie Gras rules, this soup stands out: It’s low­fat and veg­e­tar­ian. With salad and a baguette, the bean and veg­gie stew makes a fi­bre-rich meal. “Pis­tou” is its basil-based top­ping; Ital­ians call it pesto. We call it de­li­cious.

SOUPE AU PIS­TOU (Serves 6)

For the Stock 1½ tbsp olive oil, 1 medium onion, sliced thick, 1 cel­ery stalk, chopped, 1 head fen­nel bulb, chopped (or 1 tsp crushed anise seed), 1 car­rot, chopped, 2 plum toma­toes, quar­tered, 4 cloves gar­lic, crushed, ½ tsp red pep­per flakes, 3 sprigs fresh thyme (dried will also do, just use less), 1 bay leaf. For the Soupoup 1½ tbsp olive ve oil, 1 cup diced onion, n, 2 gar­lic cloves, minced, ½ cup diced car­rot, 1 cup diced cel­ery, ½ cup up chopped pars­ley, ar­s­ley, 1 tbsp minced­ced fresh (or dried) thyme, 1½ cups stewed plum toma­toes, 840 gm cooked white kid­ney beans, 6 tsp pre­pared pesto or ex­tra-vir­gin olive oil. Method Stock In a heavy-bot­tomed pot, heat oil over medium heat; stir in in­gre­di­ents. Cover. Cook un­til veg­eta­bles are soft, about 30 min­utes. Add 8 cups of wa­ter. Bring to a boil. Lower heat; sim­mer for 45 min­utes. Strain, re­serv­ing broth and half the veg­eta­bles. Skim fat. Dis­card thyme and bay leaf. Puree re­served veg­eta­bles in a blen­der. Stir into stock. Soup Heat oil in the same pot. Sauté onion, gar­lic, car­rot, cel­ery and herbs. Add re­served broth, toma­toes and beans. Bring to a boil. Lower heat; sim­mer 30 to 45 min­utes. La­dle into bowls; driz­zle with pesto or olive oil. Nu­tri­tional anal­y­sis per serv­ing: 314 calo­ries; 10 gm fat; 43.5 gm car­bo­hy­drates; 12.5 gm pro­tein.

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