October Bean and Kale Soup

I love the October beans (also called cranberry beans) that show up at the farmer's market in the fall. So, with a bag in tow from a trip to the market last week, I whipped up this easy soup. It practically makes itself. I happened to have fresh chicken stock I just made from the remains of a rotisserie chicken, and a half bag of kale in the fridge. You can use any kind of green, but the hardy kale stands up well in this soup. Use bacon in place of the country ham, or skip it altogether for a vegetarian version using vegetable stock. You can also skip the tomatoes, but I had a pot of fresh sauce simmering away (my last of the season) so I ladled a bit in. The longer the Parmigiano-Reggiano rind sits in the soup the better the flavor.
By | October 05, 2015


1. Heat oil in a large saucepan or Dutch oven. Add country ham or bacon, onion and carrot  and  saute 10 minutes. Add beans; stir well. Add stock and cheese rind. Simmer 20 minutes or until beans are tender. Add tomatoes and kale and cook 10 minutes.

Serves 8.


  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 3 ounces country ham or bacon, diced
  • 1 medium onion, chopped
  • 2 carrots, chopped
  • 2 cups fresh October or cranberry beans
  • 6 cups chicken stock
  • 2 cups fresh tomato sauce or 1 (14-ounce) can stewed tomatoes
  • 6 kale leaves, ribs removed, and chopped
  • 1 (3-inch) piece Parmigiano Reggiano cheese rind
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