Pasta e Fagioli

Monday, November 19, 2012


The very first time I tried Pasta e Fagioli {literally "pasta & beans"} was on a freezing cold winter day while living in Padova. Our Italian teacher took us out one night to a hidden gem -- a tiny, cozy, warm trattoria tucked away on a cobblestone side street. I still remember being all bundled up, shivering, and then trying out this hearty soup and falling in love, partly because it was so warm and comforting with a glass of red wine, and partly because it was absolutely delicious.

This soup is made differently throughout Italy, but no matter the variation, it was always thick and hearty. I learned to eat it drizzled in EVOO, topped in parm or pecorino, and lapped up with a thick piece of bread. I have a traditional recipe written down in one of my journals from that year... which is somewhere in your attic, Mom & Dad! So the one I cooked today is loosely based on what I remember it tasting like. I also added in kale for some greens and a fresh sprig of rosemary for more flavor.

Pasta e Fagioli
{serves 4-6}

1 yellow onion, finely chopped
4 cloves of garlic
1 carrot, finely chopped
1 bunch fresh kale, chopped
1 large sprig of fresh rosemary
EVOO
2 cans cannellini beans
1 can kidney beans
1 quart organic, low-sodium chicken or vegetable broth
4 slices of pancetta or bacon, chopped
1/2 C red wine 
1 small can tomato sauce
1 can diced tomatoes
1-2 cups dry ditalini pasta
salt & freshly ground black pepper

In a large stockpot over medium heat, cover the bottom in olive oil and add in the onion, garlic and pancetta or bacon. Stir around for a couple of minutes until they become lightly browned. Add in the carrots and sprinkle in salt & pepper. Add in the tomato sauce, diced tomatoes, beans, broth, red wine, and stir together. Raise heat and bring to a boil. Add in the rosemary sprig, and simmer for about 20 minutes. Meanwhile, cook the ditalini pasta al dente in well-salted boiling water. Drain.

Add the pasta to the soup, as well as the kale. Taste; add more salt and pepper as needed. Eat hot with shaved pecorino or parm and a drizzle of EVOO. If you're not ready to eat, let the soup simmer for as long as you'd like! I left mine for a few hours and it was even better.  Happy Thanksgiving week!

23 comments:

  1. Ooo this sounds so delicious... you literally have me drooling!

    xxx
    Jenna

    ps Last Friday my co-worker was looking for some new recipes so I sat for about 30 minutes going through your blog and printing out all of my favorites :)

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  2. one of my favorite soups!! love this.

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  3. Yum - and sounds so easy!

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  4. Um, yum! I love this soup and yours sounds soo perfect right now! Definitely saving this recipe for a cold night soon!

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  5. My favorite soup! I'll have to try your recipe. :)

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  6. YUMMY!!!!!!!!!!!! :)

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  7. YUM. This looks so good, especially since it's so cold here. I think this recipe is surely going to be on my grocery list next week (to detox after thanksgiving feastin). Thanks for sharing!

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  8. One of my favorite meals when we go to Italy to visit my family is the Pasta e Figioli my aunt makes. It's the absolute best I've ever had.
    Now I'm craving it! :)

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  9. Perfect for winter! Love your view ;)

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  10. I lived in Padova too! I sure do miss the food so I'm definitely going to try this recipe out and see if I can recreate the memory. Did you ever go to Gelateria Patagonia...I have dreams about their chocolate rum raisin gelato...so delish! Thanks for the flashback :)

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  11. You used to live in Italy? I officially just became that much more jealous of your life :)

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  12. This is exactly what I've been craving! thanks!

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  13. Gosh I miss Italian food so much.

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  14. ah omg i need to make this asap! it sounds and looks so so yum! your photos are so beautiful mands x

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  15. I just found your blog and LOVE IT!
    I live in London and the nearest farm shop is a good 2 hours away. Any suggestions?
    X

    www.esther-aw.tumblr.com

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  16. This sounds perfect for these cold winter nights. It looks amazing. -Heidi http://fabricandfrosting.blogspot.no/

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  17. This looks so good! Thank you for sharing I am definitely going to give this recipe a try! I love soup and a good piece of rustic bread this time of year!

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  18. This soup reminds me so much of my childhood - my mom made this soup a lot! :)

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  19. LOVE pasta e fagioli!! But the kind I ate in Italy wasn't as appetizing as this recipe sounds! Adding it to my list to make for the fam when I FINALLY get to go home for Christmas! Are you and Cam getting to head home for the holidays?

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  20. This looks delish and easy! It would also be the perfect cold winter day type meal, can't wait to try it :)

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  21. Wow your pasta e fagiole is so colorful! Looks wonderful! I just made my favorite version which is all white beans and involves blending a bit of the beans and liquid to thicken it. I'm posting it soon to my site! Your photography is all so gorgeous. Xoxo Jaimie (http://lizzyinthekitchen.typepad.com

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  22. can you please just write a cook book? it would have the best pictures ever.

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  23. yumm!! i have to make my moms minestrone soup soon. so perfect for fall and winter

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