This time of year, there is nothing better than a delicious cup of warm soup! This recipe I’ve adapted (admittedly very slightly - it was pretty much perfect the way it was!) from the wonderful Emily Han! You can see her original recipe here and visit her website here! I’ve made a few slight changes, by leaving the thyme leaves in the soup, using red onion, two bay leaves and adding a bit of cayenne pepper in the end! You can see exactly how I did it below!
1 lb dried large lima beans
2 tablespoons olive oil
2 celery stalks, finely chopped
1 large carrot, finely chopped
1 leek (white and pale green parts only), finely chopped
1 large red onion, finely chopped
4 garlic cloves, minced
6 sage leaves, finely chopped
4 thyme sprigs
2 bay leaves
10 cups vegetable stock
2 sweet potatoes
3 tablespoons maple syrup
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
1 teaspoon cayenne pepper
Chopped parsley, for garnish
Oyster crackers, for garnish
- Lay out dried lima beans in a sheet pan or on a clean counter and check for any small foreign objects.
- Place dried lima beans in a large bowl and cover with 1-2 inches of water. Let sit overnight, or at least eight hours. Drain & rise. (I personally soak the beans in the morning, then they’re ready to go by the time I get home from work!)
- Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
- In a large pot, heat the olive oil over medium heat and add celery, carrot, onion & leek and sauce about one minute.
- Add the garlic, sage, thyme, & two bay leaves & cook for about one minute more.
- Add the lima beans & stock and bring to a boil. Skim any foam that appears off the top.
- Cover the pot with the lid ajar & simmer for 1 1/2 hours.
- While the soup is simmering, rinse two sweet potatoes & prick all over with a fork. Roast in the oven for one hour.
- When the sweet potatoes come out of the oven, peel the skin and scoop out the inside into a blender. Add three tablespoons good maple syrup & 1/3 of the soup. Blend until smooth.
- Reintroduce the blended soup into the soup in your pot and stir until smooth. Add dash of cayenne pepper. Taste for salt & pepper and add if necessary.
- Serve topped with a dash of fresh or dried parsley & oyster crackers on the side.