Serves 4

Bean & Swiss Chard Soup

This Soup is excellent reheated.  If you are making it in advance, put the pasta in only when you reheat it, or else it will become gluey.


2 bunches Swiss Chard
2 flat anchovy fillets (optional to taste)
¼ tsp. dried Rosemary or 2-3" fresh Rosemary sprig
¼ C Extra Virgin Olive Oil
4 Whole Garlic cloves
1 Cup dried White Kidney Beans, soaked and cooked or 2 Cups drained canned Cannellini Beans 
3-4 Cups Chicken Broth or Water
Freshly ground Pepper
1 Cup short tubular pasta (½" long or less)
½ Cup freshly grated Parmigiano Reggiano Cheese
Juice of one Lemon


Trim the ends of the Swiss Chard stalks and discard any bruised or discolored leaves.  Wash the leaves in several changes of cold water until no trace of sand remains.

Put the Chard in a pot with 1 cup of water and at least 1 tsp. of Salt.  Cover and bring to a boil over moderate heat.  Cook until tender, 4 to 5 minutes.  Drain the chard over a bowl, reserving all its cooking liquid.  Coarsely chop the chard.

Mince anchovy filets with the rosemary.  If using fresh rosemary, do not chop it.

Put the olive oil and garlic in a large, heavy saucepan and turn on heat to moderately high.  Cook, stirring frequently with a wooden spoon, until the garlic becomes a pale gold color.  Add the anchovies and rosemary; stir for a few seconds and then discard the garlic.  If using fresh rosemary, discard the sprig.

Put the Chard in the pan and cook for 2 to 3 minutes, stirring to coast well with oil.  Add the cooked beans and a liberal amount of salt and pepper.  Cook for 2-3 minutes longer, stirring well.

Add the reserved cooking liquid from the chard and enough water to reach 3" from top of pan (about 4 cups).  When the soup comes to a boil, add the pasta and cook, stirring occasionally, until it is al dente, about 8 minutes.  Season with salt and pepper to taste.  Add lemon juice and stir