TED Recipe: The Renegade Lunch Lady’s Kale and White Bean Soup
Some call gourmet chef Ann Cooper the Renegade Lunch Lady. After years of culinary work advocating for sustainable agriculture and slow food (Congress appointed her part of the U.S. Department of Agriculture National Organic Standards Board), Ann founded the Food Family Farming Foundation, a non-profit seeking to end the “school food crisis”. The foundation has, very practically, provided a one-stop shop for parents and school food administrators where they can find resources, recipes, budgeting tools – and even grants for equipment! This online platform, the Lunch Box Organization, is quickly enabling parents, teachers and administrators, who know that children’s lunches could be improved, but don’t know where to start, to begin making changes with immediate impact.

We love programs like this! Scratch-cooked lunches for kids may seem beyond impossible this day and age, but we believe in the Renegade Lunch Lady and programs like the Lunch Box that are equipping people everywhere with the tools they need to make a healthy change!

To donate to the Food Family Farming Foundation find out more here.

  • The Renegade Lunch Lady's Kale and White Bean Soup

  • Ingredients

    Serves 8

    ½ lb (about 1 c) dried cannellini beans
    1 ½ c diced onion (1 ½ medium)
    1 ½ T extra virgin olive oil
    ½ tsp minced garlic (½ clove)
    1 quart vegetable stock (plus a bit more to adjust liquid to taste)
    1 tsp kosher salt
    1/8 tsp freshly ground black pepper
    1 bay leaf
    ½ tsp roughly chopped rosemary
    2 c carrots (4 large), diced medium
    7 c chopped Kale (2 to 3 bunches)
    ¾ c grated Parmesan cheese

  • Directions

    Cook the beans in a large pot of boiling water until tender, about 1 to 1 ½ hours. Drain and set aside. You should have about 2 ½ c.
    In a 6- or 8-quart stockpot, sauté the onions in the oil for 5 minutes or until soft. Add the garlic and cook for an additional minute.
    Add the cooked beans, stock, salt, pepper, bay leaf, and rosemary and
    simmer for 10 minutes.
    Add the carrots and cook another 5 minutes.
    Add the kale and cook about 12 minutes or until kale is tender. Add more vegetable stock if your soup needs more liquid, and warm through.
    Check seasoning, adjust as needed, and remove the bay leaf. Serve
    sprinkled with Parmesan.

  • Watch TEDxManhattan “Changing the Way We Eat” on Saturday, February 16th from 10:30am est to 5:45pm est!


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