Swiss Chard and Bean Soup

Swiss Chard and Bean Soup

Swiss Chard and Bean Soup is filling, light and a great low-calorie meal. This is a healthy nutrient packed soup. Swiss chard is a leafy green vegetable often used in Mediterranean cooking. Fresh young chard can be used raw in salads. Mature chard leaves and stalks are typically cooked or sautéed.

Chard is very low in calories (19 kcal per 100 g fresh, raw leaves) and fats, recommended in cholesterol controlling and weight reduction programs. Its nutrition is extremely useful for preventing and treating diabetes.The range of antioxidants in Swiss chard is obtained from its deep green leaves and also in the red, purple, and yellow colored stalks and veins.

Swiss chard is also grown in space aboard ISS (International Space Station) and was chosen because of its extreme nutrient value as well for ease of harvesting.

In India it is difficult to find Swiss Chard. I get it from a friend who has a farm in southern part of India. Swiss Chard can be replaced with Beetroot leaves, which comes close to the Chard in terms of color and appearance and is available across India. In fact Swiss Chard is a member of the same plant family, which includes other beneficial foods such as beetroot and spinach.

Swiss Chard Leaves
Swiss Chard Leaves

Preparing Swiss Chard and Bean Soup

Yield: 4 to 5 servings 
Prep time: 20 minutes 
Total time: 35 minutes

Ingredients
1/2 cup black eyed beans or white beans (soaked and boiled)
1 cup Swiss chard chopped
1 carrot diced
1 capsicum diced
1 onion diced
2 tomatoes blanched and pureed
1 tomato blanched and cubed
¼ cup celery diced
4 cloves garlic minced
1 teaspoon dried rosemary
1 bay leaf
A Pinch dried red-pepper flakes
1 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon fresh-ground black pepper
4 cups vegetable homemade stock, more if needed
2 tablespoons olive oil
Parmesan cheese grated (optional)

Directions

  • Heat the oil in a pot; add the bay leaf, garlic, onion, carrot, celery, and sauté, stirring occasionally, until the vegetables start to soften, about 5 minutes.
  • Add the capsicum, tomato, beans, Swiss chard, rosemary, chilli flakes and sauté.
  • Stir in the tomato puree, vegetable broth and salt. Bring to a boil. Reduce the heat and simmer 5 minutes.
  • Add pepper and lemon juice.
  • Serve with Parmesan cheese on top.
  • Add Garlic Bread to the soup to make a wholesome meal.

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