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  • 1 pound dried Great Northern or cannellini beans
  • 1 cup chopped fennel
  • 3 large leeks, thinly sliced (white and light green parts only)
  • 12 ounces ham hock
  • 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 7 cups water
  • 3 cups coarsely chopped Swiss chard
  • 14 slices baguette (8 ounces)
  • 4 ounces shredded Gruy√®re cheese


  1. Place beans, fennel, leeks, ham hock and pepper in a large slow cooker. Add 7 cups water. Cook on high for 5 to 6 hours or until beans are soft. Add another cup of water if needed.
  2. If desired, mash some of beans with a potato masher to make a creamy consistency. Stir in chard and cook another 15 minutes.
  3. Remove ham hock. Strip lean meat from hock and place in beans.
  4. To prepare croutons, arrange cheese over bread. Broil until cheese is melted and bubbly.
  5. Ladle into bowls and top with croutons.
—Recipe by Jean Kressy

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The recipe was originally published as White Bean Soup with Swiss Chard and Gruyere Croutons on

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