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Borlotti Bean & Bacon Soup Recipe

An excellent soup, with plenty of flavour, because of its long slow cooking time.
You need to soak the dried beans overnight for this soup, otherwise they can be replaced by 3 x 400gr drained and rinsed tinned beans, and the cooking tin reduced to 1 hour.

If you enjoy cooking take a minute to look at - top-class dishes from beginners upwards


For 6 starters:

360gr/12 oz dried Borlotti Beans
2 medium Onions
120g/4 oz Streaky Bacon - chopped
4 medium cloves Garlic
4 sticks of Celery, chopped
1 rounded teaspoon (5ml) dried Chili Flakes
1.1 litres/2 pints Chicken or Vegetable Stock
1 rounded teaspoon (5ml) Herbes de Provence - the best including green anise & lavender comes from (
Salt & Pepper to Taste - this will depend on the seasoning already in your stock


1. Soak the beans overnight in a large non-reactive container of cold water (so not aluminium).

2. Drain and rinse the beans, and put them in a stainless steel casserole large enough to hold all the ingredients.

3. Add all the other ingredients - except the salt and pepper - and mix well together.

4. Bring the mixture to the boil on top of the cooker, then lower the heat so you have a bare ripple, cover and cook for 2 hours, stirring occasionally.

5. Season to taste, and serve - if you'd like to make your soup more special, have a bowl of fried croûtons at hand, to scatter over each bowl.

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