I was so excited to get my new pressure cooker going at the weekend (yes I know this is a tiny bit sad) and I decided to make some soup as a nice, easy trial recipe. I have loads of soaked and cooked beans accumulating in the freezer (my experiment of soaking and cooking the whole bag at once is working out really well – I currently have butter beans, cannellini beans and chickpeas in stock) so decided to make a butter bean soup to use some of them up.
I’m sure I’ve mentioned this, but when you make soup – you don’t need to follow the recipe exactly! So if you want to make this, do what I did – rummage around in your fridge and pull out veg that’s getting limp, wrinkly or just needing used up soon. The only things that are essential are the beans and cabbage, I guess.
This recipe makes six small lunch portions (or serves, say, three or four for dinner with plenty of bread) and took hardly any time to cook in the pressure cooker. I’ve given directions below, but please do check your own pressure cooker’s guidelines and make sure you know how to use it before following them (I’m hardly an expert given this was the first time I’d used mine!). If you don’t have a pressure cooker, fear not – you can easily make this in a normal pot by simmering away until all the vegetables are tender (adding the cabbage half way through cooking is probably a good bet here).
Serves 6 (22p per portion)
- 1 tins-worth butter beans, cooked if dried or rinsed and drained if tinned 22p
- 1/2 savoy cabbage, chopped 50p
- 3 small carrots, peeled and chopped 12p
- 1/4 swede, cut into small cubes 15p
- 1 onion, chopped 12p
- 2 cloves garlic, crushed 6p
- 1 1/2 litres vegetable stock 15p
- 1 tbsp vegetable oil 2p
Heat the oil in the pressure cooker and gently cook the onion, carrot and swede for around 5 minutes, or until soft. Add the garlic and cook for a further minute.
Add the stock (I added one litre here but then had to add extra at the end to thin it down) and the cabbage, put the lid on and bring to pressure. Cook for five minutes at full pressure and then use the quick release method (run cold water over the lid for mine, but check your pressure cooker instructions).
Remove the lid, add the beans (and top up with more stock if too thick) and return to the heat for a minute or two until the beans have warmed through. Season well, especially with pepper, and serve with bread.