Wheat Berry and Bean Soup

The pleasantly chewy texture of wheat berries makes them a refreshing alternative to rice or pasta in bean soups. I soak them overnight, but I’ve seen some recipes that skip that step. Get the wheat berries in the Sun Oven early so you’ll have plenty of time to make the soup.

Wheat Berry and Cranberry Bean Solar Soup

Ingredients

1 cup dried cranberry beans, picked over and rinsed

1 cup wheat berries

3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil

1 large onion, chopped

2 carrots, chopped

1 celery stalk, chopped

2 garlic cloves, chopped

8 cups water

1 large tomato, coarsely chopped

1/4 cup fresh flat-leaf parsley leaves

8 fresh sage leaves

3 sprigs fresh thyme

1 2-inch piece of Parmesan rind, outer part scraped clean (optional)

2 teaspoons salt

1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

Freshly grated Parmesan cheese and additional olive oil for serving

Preparation

Soak beans and wheat berries in separate bowls overnight.

Set Global Sun Oven out to preheat.

Drain wheat berries, put them in a pot with enough water to cover them by 2 inches. Put lid on the pot and cook in Sun Oven until tender, about 1 hour. Drain and set aside.

Heat oil in a large pot over medium-high heat. Add onion, carrots, celery, and garlic. Cook until the onion begins to soften, about 5 minutes. Stir in water, drained beans, tomato, parsley, sage, thyme, and Parmesan rind (if using). Cover and transfer pot to the Sun Oven. Cook until the beans are tender, 2 to 3 hours.

Remove pot for Sun Oven. Discard thyme sprigs and Parmesan rind. Blend soup in batches in a blender until smooth. Return soup to the pot, stir in salt, pepper, and cooked wheat berries. Cover pot and return to Sun Oven until heated through or bring to a simmer on the stove over medium heat. Serve with grated Parmesan cheese and a drizzle of oil.

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