1 1/2 cups finely chopped celery
3/4 cup finely chopped onion
3 tbsp extra-virgin olive oil
3 tbsp all-purpose flour
4 cups water
1 can (16-oz) baby butter beans
1 can (16-oz) speckled (or large) butter beans
1 can (14-oz) Italian-style diced tomatoes
1 tsp dried basil
In a large saucepan, heat oil and add celery, carrots, and onions. Cook until vegetables are soft, stirring frequently. Add flour and cook, stirring, about a minute. Gradually add the water, stirring continually until smooth. Add the beans, tomatoes, and basil to the pan and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to simmer and cook about 20 minutes, until thickened slightly. Add salt and pepper to taste, if desired.
Note: You can add a cup of diced ham when you add the beans for a ham and beans soup.