Leftover Cassoulet beans are terrific for soups. Many like to puree them and have a silky texture but I generally prefer a more rustic soup.
I think I was the last person on earth to discover salt-packed capers. They are delicious and only a slight bother. You can rinse and soak a batch of them, then squeeze any liquid out and rest them in some good olive oil. They’re a perfect ingredient.
- 1 oz guanciale, chopped
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1 sprig fresh rosemary
- 2 tablespoons capers in oil (see note above)
- 1 garlic clove, chopped
- 1 cup bean broth
- 1 cup water
- 1 1⁄2 cups cooked Rancho Gordo Cassoulet (Tarbais), Ayocote Blanco, or Royal Corona beans
- 2 poached eggs
- Salt and freshly ground pepper
- Chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley for garnish
- In a soup pot over medium-low heat, render the guanciale in the olive oil until cooked; add the rosemary, capers, and garlic and cook until the garlic is golden and fragrant. Add the liquids, raise the heat to medium, and cook for a bit to make the base for a soup. Add the beans and cook until heated through.
- Right before serving, remove the rosemary sprig and season with salt and pepper. Divide the soup among bowls and top with the poached eggs. (You can poach the eggs well ahead. Just undercook them a smoodge and pour the hot bean soup over them.) Garnish with parsley.