This soup tastes like summer for two reasons. First, there’s pesto, and second there’s zucchini. It is truly the simplest thing but has a clear, beautiful taste.
Yes, there are a few leeks, but that doesn’t push it back into wintertime fare. It is a bright soup, that though perhaps better suited for August or September is still redolent of long days when you can hear kids down at the park through the screen door.
This is the sort of thing that I could eat for days on end, or as each of my meals, breakfast lunch, and dinner. I’ve done that you know, with gazpacho, but that’s another story. This is something I’d sneak back to the kitchen to eat even after having dessert. Perhaps that’s weird, but try the soup and you’ll come around.
Provençal Flageolet Soup
Adapted from Vegetarian Fast Food by Rose Elliot
6 medium carrot, cut into thin slices
3 Tablespoons olive oil
2 medium sized onions, chopped
3 large leeks, cut into slices and washed thoroughly
6 medium zucchini, sliced thinly into half moons
5 garlic cloves, crushed
3 16-ounce cans flageolets (immature kidney beans), rinsed and drained~I just used white beans
3/8 cup pesto
2 cups water
6 cups vegetable broth
salt and pepper to taste
freshly grated parmesan for serving
Heat oil over medium heat in a large dutch oven (I used a dutch oven and it almost overflowed so it will work, but something bigger might be good) and add carrots and onions. Cook until just starting to turn tender. Then add in leeks and crushed garlic cloves and continue to cook until tender. Add in zucchini and cover, stirring occasionally until about halfway cooked. Add in liquid, then bring to a boil and reduce to a simmer until zucchini are done. Add beans and let them heat through. Then add pesto right before serving and salt and pepper to taste. Serve with fresh parmesan cheese and freshly ground black pepper.