White Bean Soup with Shellfish and Pesto



4 teaspoons finely minced garlic
4 tablespoons toasted pine nuts
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
1 1/2 cups pure olive oil
2 cups fresh basil leaves
1 cup white beans (great Northerns, cannellini etc.)
2 cloves garlic , peeled
2 tablespoons olive oil
2 cups chopped onions
1 tablespoon finely minced garlic
1 pinch ground hot pepper flakes
2 cups diced, peeled, seeded tomatoes
1 cup dry white wine
2 pounds mussels or clams, well scrubbed (allow 10-12 per person)
about 1 cup fish stock or water, as needed
3 tablespoons basil pesto - see above

Cooking Instructions

For the pesto:
1. Put the basil, garlic, and pine nuts in a food processor. Pulse to combine. Add salt, pepper and gradually add olive oil until you have a green rough puree. Store the pesto in the refrigerator for up to 3 days, or freeze for longer storage.

For the soup:
2. Cover white beans with 4 cups of cold water and bring to a boil. Simmer for 2 minutes, turn off the heat, and let sit for an hour.

3. Drain the beans and put them into a saucepan. Cover with about 2 inches of cold water. Add the whole onion, garlic cloves and bay leaf and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat, add a pinch of salt and simmer until the beans are tender, but not falling apart. Remove the onion, garlic and bay leaf. Set the beans and their liquids aside.

4. Heat the olive oil in a soup pot and add the chopped onions. Cook over moderate heat for 10 minutes until tender. Add the minced garlic and a pinch of hot pepper and cook a minute longer. Add the tomatoes, beans and their liquid and simmer for two minutes. Set aside.

5. Put the shellfish in a pan with the white wine. Cover the pan, bring to a boil over high heat, and steam until shellfish are open. Remove the shellfish to a bowl. Strain the pan juices and add them to the soup pot. Remove the clams or mussels from shells and discard the shells. Heat the beans and add the shellfish. Adjust the seasoning. Thin with water or stock if needed. Serve with a dollop of pesto.

Serving Size: 1 bowl

Nutrition Information

Number of Servings: 4
40 g
Total Carbohydrate
49 g
Dietary Fiber
2 g
8 g
Total Fat
9 g
Saturated Fat
1 g
77 mg
Percent Calories from Protein
33 %
Percent Calories from Carbohydrate
40 %
Percent Calories from Fat
17 %
Vitamin A
1353 IU
Vitamin B12
112 mcg
Vitamin C
47 mg
37 mcg
195 mg
531 mg
1548 mg
716 mg
5 mg