Pasta e Fagioli (Pronounced in the states as PastaFazool!)
We are in the heart of winter and if you are like me you are tired of it already. So below is a hearty soup that I grew up on in New York. Even after I started working I would go to the local bar right down the road from where I worked and order myself a bowl of this hearty soup and a nice stout beer!
You won’t find this soup at a local business here, but it is one well worth making, and it takes no time at all. It is an Italian bean and pasta soup, and it makes 6 servings. The recipe calls for Ditalini pasta, but you can substitute any small shaped pasta, like elbow.
4 Sprigs of Fresh Thyme (dried can be substituted about 1 tsp)
1 Large Fresh Rosemary Sprig (dried can be substituted about 1 tsp)
1 Bay Leaf
1 Tbs Olive Oil
1 Tbs Unsalted Butter
1 Cup Chopped Onion
3 Ounces Pancetta (Italian Bacon) or Bacon Chopped
2 Garlic Cloves Minced
5 ¾ Cups Reduced-Sodium Chicken Broth
2 (14 ½ ounce) Cans Red Kidney Beans, Rinsed and Dried
¾ Cup Pasta (Ditalini if you can find)
½ Cup Freshly Grated Parmesan Cheese
1 Tbs Olive Oil
Wrap the thyme, rosemary and bay leaf in a piece of cheesecloth and tie it with twine. Heat the oil and butter in a large, heavy sauce pan over medium hear. Add the onion and pancetta and sauté until the onion is tender, about 3minutes, then briefly sauté in the garlic. Add the broth, beans and the herb bundle. Cover and bring to a boil over high heat, then decrease the heat to medium and simmer until the vegetable are very tender, about 10 minutes. Discard the herb bundle.
In a blender, puree 1 cup of the bean mixture until smooth, then return the puree to the saucepan. Cover and return the soup to a boil over high heat. Add the pasta, cover and boil stirring occasionally, until the pasta is tender but still firm to the bite, follow the time on the box. Season the soup with pepper.
Ladle the soup into bowls. Sprinkle with Parmesan cheese and drizzle with olive oil. This soup is great with crusty bread like
pugliese or focaccia-enjoy!
Glenn and Glenn