White Bean Soup with Swiss Chard and Gruyere Croutons
- Yield 7 servings
- Prep 10 mins
- Cook 3 hours
Feathery fennel, leeks and smoky ham punch up the flavor of this slow-cooker soup.
- 1 pound dried Great Northern or cannellini beans
- 1 cup chopped fennel
- 3 large leeks, thinly sliced (white and light green parts only)
- 12 ounces ham hock
- 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
- 7 cups water
- 3 cups coarsely chopped Swiss chard
- 14 slices baguette (8 ounces)
- 4 ounces shredded Gruyère cheese
- Place beans, fennel, leeks, ham hock and pepper in a large slow cooker. Add 7 cups water. Cook on high for 5 to 6 hours or until beans are soft. Add another cup of water if needed.
- If desired, mash some of beans with a potato masher to make a creamy consistency. Stir in chard and cook another 15 minutes.
- Remove ham hock. Strip lean meat from hock and place in beans.
- To prepare croutons, arrange cheese over bread. Broil until cheese is melted and bubbly.
- Ladle into bowls and top with croutons.
—Recipe by Jean Kressy