A hearty, healthy bean soup you can rustle up in minutes. With celery, carrots, fresh thyme and pesto, it's perfect for a cosy night in!
- 2tbsp hemp seed oil (eg Good Oil Mild and Light)
- 1 small red onion, finely chopped
- 1 fat clove garlic, crushed or finely chopped
- 1 carrot, peeled and diced
- 2 sticks celery, chopped
- 400g can chopped tomatoes
- 400g can of mixed beans, drained and rinsed
- 1tbsp sundried tomato paste
- 600ml well-flavoured vegetable stock
- 2 sprigs fresh thyme
- Salt and freshly ground black pepper
- Fresh green pesto to serve
Heat the oil in a large non-stick saucepan and sauté the onion for about 5 mins or until soft. Stir in the garlic, carrot, celery and continue to cook for a further 5 mins.
Add the tomatoes, tomato paste, stock and seasoning. Bring to the boil, then reduce the heat to a simmer, cover and cook, stirring occasionally, for 20-30 mins or until the vegetables are soft.
Place half of the vegetable mixture into a food processor and blend until smooth, then return to the pan. Add the beans, and simmer for a further 10 mins or until the beans have been heated through.
Spoon into bowl and garnish with a spoonful of fresh pesto.
Top tip for making Tuscan bean soup
Top tip: To make fresh pesto, place 1 peeled clove of garlic, 2 tbsp of pine nuts, 50g freshly grated parmesan and 30g basil in a blender and process until mixed. While the machine is still running drizzle in enough hemp seed oil to make a sauce to the thickness you require.