Warm Up With Soothing and Spunky Galician White Bean Soup
Enough with the rain already.
With our reservoirs at capacity, I think I no longer have to feel guilty about saying that, right?
Are you with me, ready for some sunshine, at least enough for an entire week’s worth?
If there can be one meager upside to the continuation of these dreary wet days, it’s that it’s perfect soup weather. And only that.
“Caldo Gallego (Galician White Bean Soup)” is plenty delicious. But it’s not the type of thing you want to spoon up on a scorching summer day. But when the skies are gray and there’s still a bit of chill in the air, this hearty Spanish soup really hits the spot.
It’s from the Wall Street Journal. And it’s a cinch to make.
You can use canned beans. But if you have the time, cooking your own from dried just tastes so much better. Plus, you can use some of the resulting cooking liquid to add to the chicken stock for the soup, as I did, instead of just plain water.
This soup doesn’t have a ton of ingredients. Yet it has layers and depths of flavor. Cured Spanish chorizo is responsible for a lot of that, adding a smoky, subtle spicy note, especially as its rendered oil dissipates into the broth. The recipe directed to cut the chorizo into thin slices. But I went a step further and cut those in half into half moons because I think they’re easier to eat that way off of a soup spoon.
Paprika plays up the Spanish flair of the soup, while turnips lend a sharp mustard taste that gets more rounded in the presence of the greens and beans.
I like to add a little vinegar to vegetable soups right at the end. I did the same here, stirring in a splash of sherry vinegar that I think brings all the flavors to life just a little bit more.
Serve a heaping bowl alongside crusty artisan bread to warm up from the inside out.
This recipe takes easily to doubling. In fact, I tripled it, filling my biggest Dutch oven to the brim — because I can’t help but think rain will still be in the forecast for awhile longer. Sigh.
Caldo Gallego (Galician White Bean Soup)
4 tablespoons olive oil
1 medium onion, diced
4 cloves garlic, peeled
2 turnips, peeled and diced
2 small-to-medium links Spanish chorizo, cut into 1/4-inch thick slices or half moons
3 cups chicken stock
1 cup water (or bean cooking liquid if you cooked your own)
3 cups chopped turnip greens, mustard greens, or kale
2 cups cooked white beans
1 cup chopped fresh parsley
1 teaspoon paprika
1 teaspoon kosher salt, plus more to taste
A splash of sherry vinegar to taste
In a stock pot, heat 2 tablespoons oil. Saute onions and garlic until soft, about 4 minutes. Add turnips, chorizo, stock and water, and bring to a boil. Reduce heat, cover and simmer 30 minutes.
Add greens, beans, parsley, paprika and 1 teaspoon salt. Simmer 30 minutes more. Add salt to taste and a splash of sherry vinegar to taste. Garnish with remaining olive oil and serve.
Adapted from the Wall Street Journal, March 23, 2019
More Soup Recipes to Enjoy: Cauliflower Soup with Aged Cheddar & Mustard Croutons
And: Rice and Peas