Soupe aux Haricots

Preparation info

  • Serves


    • Difficulty


    • Ready in

      3 hr

Appears in

The French Market

The French Market

By Joanne Harris and Fran Warde

Published 2005

  • About

Fran likes to use cannellini beans for this recipe, although white haricot beans (which are similar in taste, though a little smaller) will do just as well. Choose the tastiest tomatoes you can find-this dish is an excellent way to use those enormous, misshapen Marmande tomatoes you see on French market stalls.


  • 300 g dried cannellini or white haricot beans, soaked overnight, drained
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 2 onions, chopped
  • 2 cloves of garlic, crushed, peeled and chopped
  • 1.2 litres chicken stock
  • 400 g uncooked ham, chopped
  • 800 g tomatoes
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 3 sprigs of thyme
  • sea salt
  • freshly ground black pepper
  • bunch of flat-leaf parsley, chopped


    Soak the beans overnight in plenty of cold water. Drain and rinse them and place in a large pan with the olive oil, onions, garlic and stock. Add the chopped ham, bring to the boil and simmer gently.

    Peel the tomatoes by making a small cross in the skin and plunging them into boiling water for 20 seconds. Remove and peel the skins off. Chop the tomatoes roughly and add to the soup, along with the bay leaves and thyme, then simmer for 1½ hours. Season to taste, remove the bay leaves and thyme sprigs, add plenty of parsley, and serve.