When it’s cold outside this will warm your insides!
- 8 oz dry fava beans
- 9 oz swiss chard or kale
- 1 ½ oz pancetta or guanciale – diced
- 1 small white onion
- 2 slices stale crusty bread
- salt & pepper – to taste
- extra virgin olive oil
- 2 garlic cloves – peeled, left whole
- Sort through the fava beans, eliminating any hard ones and place in a bowl large enough to hold them covered with water and soak overnight.
- Add the 2 garlic cloves to the water with a pinch of salt. Rinse once or twice before morning.
- When ready to make the soup, peel and slice the onion very thin.
- Dice the pancetta or guanciale.
- Heat a little olive oil in a soup pot, add the pancetta or guanciale and brown slowly over a medium heat.
- Add the onions and sauté until they are getting slightly soft and translucent, being very careful to not let the onions burn.
- Add the fava beans with enough of the soaking water to cover by a few inches and cook on medium heat for about an hour.
- When the beans are ready, they should be slightly mushy.
- Taste and adjust the seasonings, remembering that the pancetta or guanciale is salty.
- Rinse and shake dry the swiss chard or kale and cut or tear into strips or smaller pieces.
- Add to the pot with the fava beans and add a few sprinklings of freshly ground black pepper. Cook for an additional 10 minutes.
- Sprinkle the stale bread with some extra virgin olive oil and place on the bottom of two soup bowls.
- Ladle the hot soup over the bread, sprinkle with a little extra virgin olive and freshly grated cheese and serve hot.
Note: I like to remove a cup of beans and some broth and spin in the processor until smooth. Add back to the pot and stir to combine with a few sprinkles of hot pepper flakes for a little heat.