Cannellini Bean Soup

CREAMY WHITE BEAN SOUP WITH HERB OIL AND FRIED CAPERS

Ingredients • 1/3 cup plus 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, divided • ¼ cup capers, rinsed and patted dry • ½ cup chopped onion • 1 small celery rib, chopped fine • 3 sprigs fresh thyme • 2 garlic cloves, sliced thin • Pinch cayenne • 2 (15-ounce) cans great Northern beans • 3 cups water, divided • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter • ½ teaspoon lemon juice plus more to taste • ½ cup fresh parsley leaves, minced • ¼ cup fresh basil leaves, minced

1. Combine 1/3 cup oil and capers in medium bowl (capers should be mostly submerged). Microwave until capers are darkened in color and shrunken, about 5 minutes, stirring halfway through microwaving. Using slotted spoon, transfer capers to paper towel–lined plate (they will continue to crisp as they cool). Reserve oil. 2. Heat remaining 2 tablespoons oil in large saucepan over medium heat. Add onion and celery and cook, stirring frequently, until softened but not browned, 6 to 8 minutes. Add thyme sprigs, garlic, and cayenne and cook, stirring constantly, until fragrant, about 1 minute. Add beans and their liquid and stir to combine. Reduce heat to medium-low, cover, and cook, stirring occasionally, until beans are heated through and just starting to break down, 6 to 8 minutes. Remove pot from heat. Discard thyme sprigs.

3. Process bean mixture in blender until thick, smooth puree forms, about 2 minutes. With blender

running, add 1 cup water and butter and continue to blend at high speed, until butter is incorporated

and mixture is pourable, about 1 minute longer.

4. Return soup to clean pot and whisk in 1 cup water. Cover and bring to simmer over medium heat,

adjusting consistency with remaining water as desired. Remove from heat. Stir in lemon juice. Season

with salt and additional lemon juice to taste. Stir parsley and basil into reserved oil. Serve, topping

each portion with a drizzle of herb oil and a sprinkle of fried capers.