This soup is a significant part of the landscape of my childhood… One of the dishes that made me pray for winter and rain to come. It is somewhere between soup and stew, and can be eaten on its own or over couscous. It can be prepared in a pressure cooker (recommended) or a regular pot. I recommend preparing it a day in advance, as it thickens and improves in flavors
⅓ cup vegetable oil
1 large onion
6 garlic cloves
½ kg. (1 pound) beef breast, cubed or Ossobuco (optional – skip for a vegetarian/vegan option)
2 Tbsp. flour/Tami flour (GF option)
100 gr. tomato paste
½ kg. (1 pound) pre-soaked white beans
2 small potatoes, peeled and cubed
2 large carrots, peeled and cut into semi-circles
2 stalks of celery (leaves included)
1-2 Tbsp. salt
1-2 Tbsp. sugar
1 tsp. cumin powder
1 tsp. chicken flavored broth powder (optional)
Chop onion and garlic in food processor.
Heat the oil in the pot, and add the chopped onions and garlic.
Sauté until golden-brown, stirring once in a while.
If you are adding the meat, add it now and brown on all sides.
Add the flour and tomato paste and stir.
Add the beans and stir.
Add warm water up to the pressure-cooker’s max line (or 3-4cm/2″ below pot’s top).
Season and add potatoes, carrots and celery.
If you’re using a pressure cooker:
Close the pressure cooker and leave the valve open.
Bring to a boil until steam comes out of the valve, then close the valve.
Continue on high heat until steam comes out again.
Move to low heat and cook for ¾ of an hour.
If you don’t have a pressure cooker:
Cover pot with lid and bring to a boil.
Move to low heat and cook for 2 hours, stirring once in a while, until beans are ready and meat is tender.
Adjust seasoning to taste (salt/sugar), if necessary.