We’ve really gotten into meatless Mondays. It’s really become almost vegan Monday and Tuesday since there’s usually enough leftover from Monday’s dinner to take care of us on Tuesday. Of course, after this past weekend with family in for the big 50th wedding anniversary of my sister and brother in law, there are still leftovers. I think my body needs meatless Monday though, so today I’m doing a slightly different twist on the Russian kale soup. We just started getting produce from our CSA, Sugarcreek Farm, and I have some Russian kale this week. The cannellini beans are soaking and I’ll cook those in a few hours. When they are ready, I’ll heat a bit of olive oil in the soup pan, add a chopped onion, a couple of cloves of garlic either sliced or crushed, and stir that around a bit. Next I’ll add 1-2 potatoes, peeled and chopped, and one bunch of kale, washed well and coarsely chopped. Then, a can of diced tomatoes. Next, I’ll stir in 1/3 cup of farro and after a minute or two, I’ll pour in a mixture of either vegetable stock or water and tomato juice, probably 3-4 cups of water and nearly that amount of juice. The cooked and strained cannellini beans will also be added now. You could substitute bean cooking water for some of the broth or water if you wanted. At this point, give a little taste and add some salt and smoked paprika and a pinch of thyme. Simmer, stirring occasionally, until flavors are mixed and farro and all the vegetables are done.
If you haven’t yet tried farro, by all means please do so. It is an Italian grain, high in protein and fiber and delicious. I’ve bought it at a local grocery store, but if you can’t find it locally, I believe it can be ordered online.