A three course meal – Part I – Bean soup with basil oil

The other day we had some dear friends over for dinner. It had taken me a couple of days to decide what to cook, as I wanted to offer a three course meal, tasty as well as appealing to the eye, easy to do and where much could be prepared in advance without costing a fortune. Here is the menu I came up with:

Starter
Bean soup with basil oil and a garlic and parsley biscuit

Main course
Pork loin with a mix of tomatoes and herb cream cheese

Dessert
Cloudberry tartlet

Starting with the starter (!) each dish will be presented in a separate post.

Bean soup with basil oil and a garlic and parsley biscuit

This is what you need

Serves 4

  • 2 cans cannellini beans
  • 1 finely chopped shallots
  • 1 cube of vegetable stock
  • 3 dl water
  • 2 dl milk
  • (heavy cream)
  • salt and black pepper
  1. Saute the onion until soft without adding color and put into a saucepan.
  2. Add the beans, water, milk and cube of vegetable stock.
  3. Bring to a boil and let simmer for 10 minutes.
  4. Run the soup in a food processor until smooth like purée and then pass through a sieve.
  5. Bring to a boil again and season with salt and pepper.

The soup can easily be made well in advance and heated just before serving. It should measure 7 dl, if not, fill up with cream (to give extra body to the soup) or milk.

Basil oil (can be made in advance)

First I thought of using my truffle oil (a birthday gift), but I can’t really stand neither the scent nor the taste, which to me is like petroleum, so I changed my mind and went for the basil oil instead.

  • 7-8 basil leaves
  • 2-3 tablespoons good olive oil, preferably with a lemon flavor

Mix chopped basil and olive oil with a hand blender.

Garlic and parsley biscuit

  • 2 slices of a good light sourdough bread (or other white bread)
  • 50 g butter
  • 1 clove garlic
  • 1/2 dl chopped parsley
  1. Stir the butter soft and mix with pressed garlic and chopped parsley.
  2. Spread butter on both sides of the bread and fry (both sides) until the surface is golden brown.
  3. Cut each slice into two triangles.

Portion the soup into four bowls and drizzle a little basil oil into the soup. Drag with a spoon through the oil droplets to form a decorative pattern and serve with a triangle of garlic and parsley biscuit.

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