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Recipe for :

Tuscan Mushroom Soup
This is one of the recipes that has been provided by Shirley Cline from San Fransisco. Shirley said:

"This recipe comes from "The Campagna Table". My girlfriend's mom was from Tuscany and it sounds just like the way she made hers. Haven't tried this version yet but intend to soon".


1/2 cup dried white beans, such as cannellini, navy or Great Northern
1/2 cup dry red wine (use one you would drink)
3 Tblsp. dried porcini mushrooms
1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
1 onion, minced
1 clove garlic, minced
2 lbs. assorted fresh mushrooms (portobello, chanterelle, crimini, oyster or shitake, and white button, thinly sliced)
8 oz. beef stewing meat, cut into 1/2 inch dice
1 large carrot diced
1 leek, split lengthwise, rinsed and coarsely chopped
1 cup fresh (or frozen) peas
1/4 cup minced prosciutto
2 tsp. freshly chopped sage
2 tsp. freshly chopped rosemary leaves
1 1/2 cups milled or crushed canned Italian plum tomatoes
2 qts. chicken stock (fresh or low sodium canned)
Salt & pepper to taste

8 small slices peasant bread for serving
1 clove garlic, peeled for serving
Freshly grated Parmesan cheese for serving


Place the beans in a bowl and cover with plenty of cold water. Soak overnight, changing the water every 8 hours or so. Drain, rinse and drain again. Set aside.

In a small saucepan, bring the wine to a simmer. Add the dried mushrooms and turn off the heat. Cover and set aside for 30 minutes.

In a large soup pot, heat the olive oil over medium high heat. Add the onion, garlic, fresh mushrooms and beef and cook, stirring until the onion is translucent about 5 minutes. Add the carrot, leek, peas and prosciutto and cook, stirring 2 minutes. Add the soaked mushrooms with their liquid (watch for any sand at bottom), the drained beans, rosemary, sage, tomatoes, stock and a large pinch of salt and mix well. Cover and reduce the heat to a simmer. Simmer 1 1/2 hours or until the beans and meat are soft. Season with salt and pepper to taste.

When ready to serve, toast or grill the bread. Lightly rub each slice with the garlic. To serve, place a slice of garlic toast in the bottom of each bowl and ladle the soup over the bread.  Top with Parmesan cheese.

Shirley Cline