This soup is pure comfort food! It is very satisfying just as it is, served with some crusty bread for dipping. If you want it to be even heartier, you can brown some Italian Sausage, pancetta or chicken before adding the garlic. Note: I buy whole wedges of parmesan cheese and grate it as needed. For this recipe I cut a piece of the outer rind into small cubes and sprinkle them on top of each bowl of soup just before serving. When we were kids, my sister and I swiped up the little cheese morsels as fast as my mother could cut them up.
1/3 cup olive oil
6 cloves chopped garlic
2 heads of escarole, well washed and cut into 2 inch pieces
8 cups chicken broth
2 15 oz cans cannellini, or great northern beans, drained and rinsed
1 cup grated parmesan plus cubed rind for garnish
1 tsp kosher salt
Lots of freshly ground black pepper
Chop and wash the escarole and place in a colander. There is no need to fully dry the greens. Heat the oil in a large pot on medium heat. Add the garlic and cook just until fragrant and lightly colored. Add all the greens at once. Add salt and pepper, stir and cover with a tight fitting lid. After a few, minutes give the greens another stir.
They should have wilted and cooked down considerably. Add the chicken broth and stir to combine. Reduce heat, cover and cook till it comes up to a boil. Add the beans and cook for 5-10 minutes longer. Ladle into soup bowls. Sprinkle liberally with grated and cubed parmesan cheese.