Here’s a super-nourishing and frugal dish that doesn’t skimp on flavor.
Roasted San Marzano tomatoes, yellow onions, garlic and peppers with spicy Tasso ham, celery, fresh herbs and raw olive oil..
(click image to enlarge)
Serves 2-3 as a main dish
A specialty of Cajun cuisine, tasso ham is a spicy, peppery smoked pork butt
1 28 oz can organic San Marzano tomatoes, drained (juice reserved) OR equiv. fresh plum tomatoes
1 can organic cannellini beans, drained and rinsed, OR equiv. soaked and cooked dry white beans
8 oz tasso ham, cut into cubes
1/2 large yellow onion
1 head garlic
1/2 red bell pepper
1 large Italian grilling pepper
1/3 cup celery, diced
1 bay leaf
1 6-inch sprig rosemary
3-4 basil leaves
1 small bunch thyme
2 blades mace
1 teaspoon cumin seed
1 teaspoon caraway seed
1 teaspoon celery seed
1 teaspoon hulled cardamom
1 teaspoon paprika
1 teaspoon turmeric
1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper
1 tablespoon pastured butter
2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
1/2 teaspoon black pepper more-or-less
3/4 teaspoon sea salt more-or-less
Lay the tomatoes, onions, garlic and peppers on a parchment paper-lined baking sheet and roast in a 500 degree oven until browned/blistered. Set aside to cool.
Sauté celery, tasso and whole spices with butter in a Dutch oven over medium-low heat until celery is soft and spices are fragrant, about 7 minutes.
Working in batches if necessary, squeeze garlic from their skins and pulse roasted vegetables in a food processor until slightly chunky. Transfer to Dutch oven with celery and ham.
Stir in cooked beans, ground spices and minced fresh herbs. Adjust consistency with reserved tomato juice and simmer uncovered for 30 minutes, stirring occasionally.
To serve, ladle soup into bowls and dress with a tablespoon of good olive oil. Accompany with slices of toasted alternative-grain bread if that’s to your liking.