White Bean and Roasted Pepper Puree

By Kim O'Donnel
Wednesday, February 20, 2008; 12:00 AM

2 to 3 servings

Heat a few tablespoons of vegetable oil or olive oil in the pot. Add 1/2 diced medium onion and a few chopped cloves garlic. Cook for 3 to 4 minutes, until the onions are soft; then add one or two 15-ounce cans drained and rinsed white beans and enough of your favorite canned broth to cover. Add a sprig of rosemary and cook, with the mixture barely bubbling, until thoroughly warmed. Discard the herb. Use a blender or immersion blender to puree until smooth. Add the equivalent of one roasted red pepper (from a jar). The soup will turn a pretty shade of pink. Season with 1/2 teaspoon cayenne or smoked paprika, and with salt and black pepper to taste.

Before serving, squeeze the juice of 1/2 lemon over the soup.

POSSIBLE GARNISHES: toasted baguette slices rubbed with a clove of garlic, chopped grape tomatoes, a sprinkling of fleur de sel.

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