|Source||Angie Grandstaff, Main Library (2007)|
In a 3-quart saucepan, heat oil over medium heat until hot. Add onion and celery; cook 5-8 minutes until tender, stirring occasionally. Add garlic; cook 30 seconds while stirring. Add beans, chicken broth, pepper, thyme and water; heat to boiling over high heat. Reduce heat to low, simmer uncovered 15 minutes.
Meanwhile, discard tough stems from spinach and thinly slice leaves. With slotted spoon, remove 2 cups bean and vegetable mixture from soup; set aside. In blender, with center part of cover removed to let steam escape, blend remaining soup in small batches until smooth. Return blended soup to saucepan. Stir in reserved beans and vegetables. Heat to boiling over high heat, stirring occasionally. Stir in spinach; cook 1 minute until wilted. Stir in lemon juice. Remove from heat. Serve with Parmesan cheese if desired.
Makes 6 cups.