December 17, 2009

White Bean, Kale, and Tomato Stew

Apparently I cannot get enough soups and stews this season. But what’s wrong with that? They’re filling, comforting, and many times, can be healthy. Take this stew, for example. It’s vegetarian. (Vegan, even, if you omit the Parmesan.) It’s gluten-free. It’s packed with fiber and nutrition. But that’s not even the best part. It’s cheap to make, and it’s fast and easy! If your December has been as busy as mine has, this will be a blessing! I made this the other night for dinner, which left me with plenty of time to wrap presents. It was delicious and so guilt-free that I even had seconds.

I’m a bit ahead of schedule for New Year’s resolutions, but I’ve already decided on one resolution – to incorporate more vegetarian and vegan meals into our diet. The reasons are plentiful – swapping more plant-based foods for the meats means our grocery bill will be lighter. Meals can be healthier. And our carbon footprint will be smaller. While I am not aspiring to become a vegetarian full-time, I do acknowledge and appreciate the benefits that healthy vegetarian meals can provide. (Healthy being the key word here – while french fries, ice cream, and candy can be vegetarian, I am not opting to pick up a steady diet of such things.) This will be a bit of a change of mindset for me. I am accustomed to making a grocery list and planning meals according to what proteins (aka meat) is on sale that week, or what meat I have in our freezer. I will have to make a concerted effort to plan for at least one meatless dinner every week. I’m excited about it. I hope to share with you some meatless, gluten-free meal options very soon!

For now, I hope you’ll enjoy this quick stew.

White Bean, Kale, and Tomato Stew, adapted from Serious Eats

1 ½ lbs kale, larger stems removed, and leaves chopped (can substitute swiss chard or other leafy greens)

¼ c olive oil

3 garlic cloves, thinly sliced

¼ t crushed red pepper

1 14-oz can of diced tomatoes

1 15-oz can of white beans, drained and rinsed

2 cups vegetable broth

Salt and pepper

Grated Parmesan (omit for vegan)

Fill a large stockpot halfway with water. Bring to a boil and then toss in the kale leaves. Reduce heat to a simmer and cook for 6-8 minutes or until leaves are tender (not mushy). Drain leaves in a colander.

Wipe out any excess water from the pot. Place back on burner and turn to medium heat. Add olive oil, garlic, and red pepper, and sauté for 1 minute, stirring occasionally.

Add the tomatoes and bring to a boil. Add the beans and broth, and bring to a boil again. Cook for 3 minutes, stirring often.

Reduce heat to a simmer and add the kale. Cook for 5 minutes. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Garnish with Parmesan.

Serves 2-3.

27 Responses to “White Bean, Kale, and Tomato Stew”

  1. Am not familiar with kale, but a healthy quick fix is always welcome.

  2. Alta! I think I am going to make this tonight with some garlic bread! Yum! I have all the ingredients. We have NOT had enough soups seeing that it is not my hubby’s fav. Maybe this will win him over. Thanks!

  3. I’ve just developed a recent love affair with Kale. I guess the name alwyas scared me but it’s heavenly and delicious! I love it in your stew.

  4. This looks gorgeous. I’m wondering if we could use our Asian greens instead of the kale since our kale is doing NOTHING in the garden. Hmm…

  5. I love kale in soup – it holds it’s texture so well. We have been eating more vegetarian dishes lately and I’ve been meaning to make some veggie stock. Just haven’t done it yet. It’s going on my to-do list…I have tons of great recipes.

    The simplicity of preparation is a huge plus and the healthy nature of this soup is a welcome relief from all the holiday sweets.

  6. Such a delicious stew with white beans! I’ve been making a lot of stews, at least twice a week although I don’t know why I haven’t posted of any of them. Soups and stews are so perfect to eat in the wintertime!

  7. oh my! I’m pretty sure this could become my new favorite meal! looks great!

  8. How exciting that you’re going to add more veggie meals!! You are certainly off to a fine and flavorful start, I must say!

  9. I love kale and white beans and what a great twist on this recipe. Great pics too!

  10. What a hearty and healthy meal! I also resolve to work more vegetables and vegetarians meals into my repertoire in the new year.

  11. I make a very similar dish and we love it. White beans and kale belong together! The addition of tomatoes looks lovely.

  12. wow this looks wondeful I just picked up some Kale today and didnt know what to do with it yet…now I know thanks!!

  13. Oh wow! I love kale, and this looks heavenly =D.

  14. oh I could really use a bowl of that right now! it is so cold here in brooklyn, ny! that stew looks so good and it sticks to your ribs, my kind of winter meal

  15. Simply delicious!I love white beans in all ways.

  16. Wow, sounds like you’re truely busy! No kidding… don’t even have enough time for cooking. Well, guess this soup just fit in well and hassle free of coz. Hope you’ve a pleasant day and enjoy the festive season! Let’s go green, girl… yay!

  17. It’s raining outside right now, and even though it’s only breakfast time, I could TOTALLY go for a big bowl of that with some warm crusty bread right now!

    • kristy – I hate being so busy, cause when I can’t get in the kitchen and play, I’m stressed!

      Vegetable Matter – I bet Asian greens would work just fine!

      Shirley – You should try kale – it’s wonderful and has a bit of a spicy kick to it. And so healthy!

      lvegas, Jessie, Lauren, pegasuslegent, Phoo-D, Cookin’ canuck, Serena, Tasty Trix, Simply Life, natasha, Amy, Shelly and Noelle – Thank you!

  18. Your tomato stew sounds and looks wonderful for this snowy day!

  19. This is my kind of meal! I eat like this often and kale is the best. Lovely photo!

  20. My family doesn’t like kale (except for the dogs), but I think all I need to do is show them your picture. You make everything look delicious. And I’m sure yours looks better than mine would.

  21. Great stew, this ticks lots of boxes – healthy, tasty, interesting, fast, affordable :)

  22. Congratulation on TOP 9 , today. I bet the stew taste delicious, and no doubt I want try to make it too. Thank you for sharing the recipe

  23. Congrats on the Top 9 for Foodbuzz today!!

  24. Alta,

    I want a huge bowl of this! This is my kind of winter meal and one I make so often, cheap and easy to make!! Beautiful and congrats on top 9!

  25. Yay! More things to make with the kale from my garden.

  26. Pingback: 12 Uses For Your Preserved Tomatoes During Winter : Veggie Gardener

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