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Compliments of Diana Dyer, MS, RD

Tomato Bread Soup

Here is an example of how I add cooked beans to nearly everything! I took a typical traditional recipe and boosted the protein, fiber, and phytochemicals without altering the taste or texture significantly simply by adding a can of beans.

Best when you can get locally grown organic vine-ripened tomatoes (August in Michigan)!

  • 3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 small onion, chopped
  • 1 garlic clove, thinly sliced
  • 2 pounds fresh tomatoes, peeled and roughly chopped (some recipes say to remove the seeds, but I don’t bother as the seeds and the yellow “goo” around the seeds contain numerous beneficial phytochemicals)
  • 3/4 pound day-old multi-grain bread, roughly sliced or cubed (this is how I used up a stale multi-brain baguette from my local bakery)
  • 2 cups water or vegetable stock (I always have vegetable stock in my freezer ready to use)
  • 15 oz. can great Northern beans, drained
  • 1-cup freshly torn basil leaves (or small basil leaves simply removed from the stem)
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • Grated Parmigiano-Reggiano

In a 4-quart soup pot, heat the olive oil over a medium-high flame until hot but not smoking. Add the onion and garlic and sauté for a few minutes, until onion is soft. Add chopped tomatoes and their juices and bring to a boil. Reduce to a simmer and let cook until the tomatoes begin to soften and break down (about 5 minutes).

Add the stale bread chunks, cooked beans, and broth. Continue simmering until all the bread has absorbed as much liquid as possible, yielding a baby food-like consistency. Add the basil and stir. Season, to taste, with pepper. Let the soup continue simmering for 10 more minutes, then serve immediately in warmed soup bowls. Garnish, to taste, with just a smidgeon or Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese.

I served this with fresh Michigan sweet corn and cherries with some black olive bread made by Zingerman’s ( Oh yum, yum, what an easy and beautiful summer evening dinner!