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White Bean Soup with Almond Pistou

Ingredients
1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
4 shallots, finely diced
3 cloves fresh garlic, finely minced
sea salt
2 stalks celery, diced
1 carrot, diced
1 cup cannellini beans
3 cups Pearl Unsweetened or Original soymilk
1 cup spring or filtered water
1 bay leaf

Pistou:

1/2 cup blanched almonds
2 cloves fresh garlic, sliced
1 cup loosely packed basil leaves
2 teaspoons sweet white miso
4 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
1 teaspoon Suzanne's Specialties brown rice syrup

Directions 
Place oil, shallots and garlic in a medium soup pot and turn heat to medium. When the shallots begin to sizzle, add a pinch of salt and saute until the shallots are translucent, about 2 minutes, taking care not to over-brown the garlic. Stir in celery and sauté just until shiny with oil. Stir in carrots and saute until shiny with oil. Spread vegetables over the bottom of the pan and top with beans. Add soymilk and water, cover and bring to a boil over medium heat. Reduce heat to low and cook until the beans are quite soft, about 60 minutes. 

While the soup cooks, make the pistou. Place all ingredients in a food processor and puree until smooth. To serve, remove bay leaf and ladle soup into individual bowls and swirl a hearty dollop of pistou into each bowl.

Makes 4-6 servings. 

Note: You can speed up the cooking time of the soup by using canned organic beans. The soup will cook in 20 minutes.  

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