A classic one-pot meal from the hills of Tuscany includes a beloved Appalachian ingredient—white beans. Try serving this with a hot pan of cornbread, the Appalachian cousin of polenta.

Bring a large pot of water to boil. 

Trim and discard the stem end of:
1 pound shallots

Drop the shallots into the boiling water for about one minute, transfer them to a colander, then refresh under cold running water. Drain well. Peel, then finely chop or mince in a food processor.

In a large deep skillet with a lid, or in a dutch oven, melt and heat together:
1 tablespoon butter
1 tablespoon olive oil

Add the shallots, stir and cook uncovered over medium low heat for about 10 minutes until very tender but not brown.

Stir in and coat well with butter and oil:
1 pound small potatoes, halved
1 teaspoon salt
2 to 3 cups baby carrots, halved lengthwise

Cook for 10 minutes over medium heat, covered tightly.

Stir in:
1 teaspoon rubbed sage
1 teaspoon marjoram or oregano
1 teaspoon thyme
1 cup dry white wine
3 cloves garlic, minced

Cover and cook over low heat for about 8 minutes.

4 cups vegetable stock
4 cups white pea or navy beans, cooked and drained (canned beans are fine, rinse them first)

Bring to boil. Lower heat, cover and cook until carrots and potatoes are completely tender (about 25 minutes.) 

Salt to taste and add a good amount of:
freshly ground black pepper

Stir in:
2 to 3 cups fresh mustard greens or kale,  stems removed, chopped finely

Remove from heat. Allow soup to sit for about 10 minutes before serving.

Meanwhile, melt in a medium skillet:
1 tablespoon butter

2 cups coarse breadcrumbs
or croutons

Sauté over medium heat for about 10 minutes or until the crumbs are toasted. Serve the soup hot, with a generous spoonful of breadcrumbs and ground black pepper on top. Serves 6.

Recipe from “The Folk School Cookbook.”

You can pick up your own copy of “The Folk School Cookbook” here, on our Facebook page, or at the Folk School Craft Shop, Malaprops in Asheville, Highland Books in Brevard, Curiosity Shop in Murphy, Highlander Gallery in Brasstown, and City Lights in Sylva.

John C. Campbell Folk School
About John C. Campbell Folk School

The Folk School transforms lives, bringing people together in a nurturing environment for experiences in learning and community life that spark self-discovery. Located in scenic Brasstown, North Carolina, the Folk School offers year-round weeklong and weekend classes for adults in craft, art, music, dance, cooking, gardening, nature studies, photography and writing.