Place the kidney beans
in a medium pot, add water to cover by 2-inches and bring to a boil. (If using canned kidney beans, skip this step.) Turn the heat down, let simmer
for 45 minutes to 1 hour, or until just-tender. Use the same process for the cannellini beans.
In a large soup
pot, heat the olive oil over medium heat. Add the pancetta
, rendering the fat and cooking until slightly crispy about 3 minutes. Saute the onion, celery
, carrot and garlic for 3 to 4 minutes. Season with salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste. Add the diced tomatoes, the cooked and drained kidney beans, cannellini beans
, chick peas
, and the chicken stock
. Using kitchen twine, tie the herbs
and the bay leaf
into a bundle and add to the pot. Season with the red chili flakes, salt and pepper. Cook for 15 to 20 minutes, then add the kale
. Continue cooking until the beans are completely tender.
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Drizzle olive oil
over the slices of peasant bread, season with a little salt and pepper and toast in the oven. Serve the soup in large bowls with grated Parmesan
and a slice of toast.