This delicious soup can be made a number of different ways, so don’t be afraid to add whatever extra vegetables you have on hand for roasting.  I’ve made it with butternut squash, pumpkin, broccoli or cauliflower, in addition to the carrots, celery and fennel called for below.  You can use canned kidney, navy or cannellini beans if you run out of time to cook them yourself.  It’s an extremely forgiving recipe!

Roasted Vegetable Soup
Serves 8
A hearty, nourishing and very versatile soup.
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To prepare the beans
  1. • 1 cup dried canellini beans, sorted through and rinsed
  2. • 1 carrot, cut into several pieces
  3. • 1 rib celery, cut into several pieces
  4. • 1 medium yellow onion, unpeeled, cut into quarters
For the soup
  1. • 1 large bulb fennel, quartered, cored, and cut into 1/2 inch slices
  2. • 1 sweet potato, peeled and cut into 1/2  inch pieces
  3. • 2 large carrots, peeled and cut into 1/2 inch pieces
  4. • 3 Tbs. extra-virgin olive oil
  5. • 1 large yellow onion, peeled and diced
  6. • 2 ribs celery, diced
  7. • 28-oz. can whole tomatoes
  8. • 4 c chicken stock
  9. • 1/2 bunch kale, trimmed and roughly chopped
  10. • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
  11. • several sprigs fresh thyme
Instructions
  1. Cover the cannelloni beans with several inches of water in a ceramic or glass bowl. Soak them overnight. The next morning, place the drained beans in a 6 quart pot, add the carrot, celery and onion and bring them to a boil. Simmer at medium heat until tender, but slightly al dente.
  2. Meanwhile, heat the oven to 450°F (400° convection). In a large bowl, toss the fennel, sweet potatoes and carrots with about 2 tbsp of the oil; season generously with salt and pepper. Spread on a rimmed baking sheet.
  3. Roast, tossing after 10 minutes and every 5 minutes thereafter, until the vegetables are nicely browned and tender when pierced with a fork, about 30 minutes.
  4. In a large stock pot, saute the onions in the remaining oil until translucent.  Add the celery, and saute until slightly browned.
  5. Add the tomatoes and their juices, crushing them with the back of a spoon.  Bring to a simmer.
  6. Add the chicken stock, all of the roasted vegetables, the cooked canellini beans, the sprigs of thyme and the chopped kale.   Bring back to a brisk simmer, turn the heat to medium low, cover, and simmer for 10 minutes, stirring occasionally. Thin with water, if necessary, to get the consistency you like. Salt and pepper to taste. Ladle into bowls and serve immediately.
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