After discovering these GIANT Christmas Lima Beans at Seed Savers Exchange, I knew I had to get some! A lot like corona beans, they are big and meaty. I was intrigued by the colors and size of these beans! Bring on the Giant Bean Soup!
I saw some really great recipes floating around on the web for Christmas limas. They had their heyday a few years ago it seems. I narrowed it down to a few ideas and then decided that I would make a hearty soup adapted from a recipe I saw here – starting by cooking up the beans the night before with some onion and thyme sprigs that I dug out from under about a foot of snow.
My thyme is always there waiting for me – throughout the winter – under all that snow.
The next morning I sautéed up some carrots, celery, shallots and garlic. Added some tomato paste and stirred that around a bit. Then a big can of chopped San Marzano tomatoes. I cooked that down a bit until it made a nice chunky sauce as the base of my soup.
All of this went into the pot with the beans and the broth from the day before. I found some of my pesto in the freezer (I store mine in cubes) and tossed in a few of those…half a jalapeño – soup can become anything your refrigerator has been hiding for too long.
And of course you can always add in some heat with some of my favorite hot sauce – some of us put it in everything!
In the mood for soup? Check these out too!
Huge Christmas Lima Beans are the star of this vegetable soup!
- 1 pound cooked Christmas Lima Beans or any large lima - for directions on how to cook beans see the notes section.
- 2 Tbs. olive oil
- 1/2 cup finely chopped shallots
- 2 celery stalks chopped
- 3 carrots diced
- 4 cloves garlic chopped
- 1 Tbs. tomato paste
- 28 oz can diced San Marzano tomatoes
- salt and pepper to taste
- Optional: fresh basil julienned to top, 3 Tbs pesto, any other veggies you might have in your fridge
Cook beans. See notes section.
Put beans and the bean broth in a pot and heat. If you are using canned beans and do not have the broth you used to cook them, toss in about 4 cups of chicken broth.
Heat olive oil in a pan and saute shallots, carrot, celery until tender. Add garlic and 1/2 tsp salt, cook another minute.
Add the tomato paste, blend that in for another minute.
Add the diced tomatoes and simmer everything about 15 minutes until it becomes a chunky sauce.
Season with salt and pepper to taste. Add everything into the pot with the beans.
Add any other veggies you might need a home for.
Simmer the soup, covered, on low for about 30 minutes.
Optional: Right before serving you could stir in fresh spinach.
To cook lima beans, add 8 cups of water to a large pot, add beans(rinsed first), a few sprigs of thyme, a bay leaf, a few cloves of garlic and an onion quartered. Bring to a slow rolling boil and turn down to a simmer, cover and cook 1 hour and 45min. Add salt about halfway through to taste. Cook until the beans are tender.