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Myra’s Recipes: White Bean, Kale & Bacon Stew

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A delicious, warm stew is a perfect meal on a cool spring evening, and this is one of my all-time favorites. It’s nourishing and satisfying, and a great way to eat kale, which is often considered the most nutrient-dense food on the planet. Bites of white beans and kale flavored with bacon, garlic and herbs, are incredibly delicious. My husband Drew, who generally doesn’t request beans for his entrée, is always thrilled when I make this stew. And now that our nest is empty and we’re usually cooking for just the two of us, we are thrilled to have enough left over for second dinner that reheats in a snap. 

Kale and beans are a powerhouse combination when you’re looking for both great health and great taste. Check out the nutritional information listed below the recipe. It blows me away! One serving has 27 grams of protein, 60% of your daily value for fiber, 110% of your vitamin A, 140% of your vitamin C, 35% of your iron, and the list goes on and on.

Bacon adds great flavor to this dish, but if you are a vegan or vegetarian, you can omit it and use vegetable stock for a satisfying meal. I always look for organic bacon because it ensures that the pigs were fed all organic feed, no antibiotics, and also that no artificial nitrates or artificial colors were added when processed. Organic standards have guidelines to ensure the animals were raised humanely in a healthy environment, which makes me feel much better about eating it.

Enjoy the Earth’s delicious bounty!

                                                                            

Take Today’s Step and share this hearty stew with your family. How did you like it? Let us know what you thought in Comments below! 

  • White Bean, Kale & Bacon Stew

  • Serves 4  |  Prep time: 40 mins; Cooking time: 50 mins
  • This stew is perfect for lunch or dinner, served hot with warm, crusty whole wheat bread and a green salad. A double batch made ahead of time is a great way to feed a crowd.
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  • Ingredients

  • 3 tablespoonsOlive oil
  • 9 ounces Lean, trimmed center cut bacon (cut crosswise into 1/4-inch-wide strips)
  • 1 large Yellow onion (cut into 1/2-inch dice, about 2 cups)
  • 3 medium Carrots (peeled, cut in half lengthwise and thinly sliced, about 2/3 cup)
  • 2 large Celery stalks (thinly sliced, about 3/4 cup)
  • 4 large Cloves garlic (minced)
  • 1 tablespoon Fresh thyme leaves (or 1 teaspoon dried thyme)
  • 3 15-oz cans cannelini beans (drained and rinsed, or 4 cups cooked white beans)
  • 4 cups Chicken or vegetable broth (preferably low-sodium)
  • 12 ounces Dino (lacinato) kale (stems discarded and leaves cut crosswise into 1-inch-wide ribbons or torn into bite-size pieces, about 8 cups packed)
  • 1/2 cup Coarsely chopped fresh Italian flat leaf parsley
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper (to taste)
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  • Directions

  • Heat the oil in a large, heavy pot over medium heat. Add the bacon and cook, stirring occasionally, until the bacon is cooked, 10 to 15 minutes. Add the onion, carrots, celery, garlic and thyme, and cook, stirring frequently, until the vegetables soften slightly, about 10 minutes.
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  • Add the beans and the broth, raise the heat to high, and bring to the start of a boil. Reduce the heat to maintain a simmer and cook, covered, for 5 minutes. Stir in the kale and cook, covered, stirring occasionally, until the kale and vegetables are tender, about 15 minutes.
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  • Stir in the parsley and season to taste with salt and pepper. Serve hot.
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  • Calories per serving: 520, Fat 22 grams, Cholesterol 25 mg, Sodium 860 mg, Carbohydrates 57 grams, Fiber 15 grams, Sugars 11 grams, Protein 24 grams.
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  • Percentage Daily Values per serving (based on a 2,000-calorie diet): Vitamin A 110%, Vitamin C 140%, Calcium 30%, Iron 35%, Thiamin 100%, Riboflavin 20%, Niacin 15%, Vitamin B6 15%, Phosphorus 35%, Magnesium 35%, Zinc 30%.

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