Pasta and Bean Soup / Pasta e fagioli Zuppa
In Italy there are many regional variations of this wonderful, comforting soup and this one is from the regions of Campania and Tuscany. “This rustic Italian recipe features a heart-warming blend of pasta, beans, vegetables and herbs, brought together with flavoursome chopped tomatoes. Easy to make, this delicious soup works well all year round.” Gino D’Acampo
- You will need a large frying pan and stock pot
- Good quality olive oil for cooking
- 1 white medium onion, finely chopped
- 2 garlic cloves, crushed
- 1 stick of celery, finely chopped
- 1 carrot, peeled and finely chopped
- 1 medium courgette, peeled and chopped into bite size pieces
- 5 fresh tomatoes, peeled, seeded and coarsely chopped
- 1 litre vegetarian vegetable stock
- 1 x 400g can cannellini beans, drained and rinsed
- 100g of tubetti or ditali pasta (small paste shapes)
- Ground sea salt and black pepper
- Vegetarian hard cheese (e.g. pecorino) finely grated
- Small bunch of flat leaf parsley, stems removed, and leaves chopped
- Extra virgin olive oil for drizzling
- Heat 2 tbsp olive oil in the pan and gently fry the chopped onion for 5 minutes, then add the garlic and fry for a further 2 minutes.
- Add the chopped celery, carrot and courgette and continue to fry on a medium heat for 5 minutes or until fork tender. Stir often.
- Transfer everything into the stock pot then pour in the chopped tomatoes, the vegetarian vegetable stock and the drained cannellini beans. Mix thoroughly, add salt and pepper and stir.
- Bring to the boil and add the pasta. Stir to mix in the pasta.
- Put the lid on and simmer for 5 minutes
- Take the lid off and gently simmer for 10 minutes or until the pasta and beans are tender, stirring occasionally.
- Turn off the heat and leave it to rest for 3 to 4 minutes
- Ladle into warm bowls, sprinkle the grated cheese over, drizzle over some extra virgin olive oil and top with sprigs of parsley.
“Hello John. We love our soups – especially with some home baked bread or good shop bought artisan bread. Why wait for Winter when you can enjoy them all the year round! The combination of beans and pasta is the perfect protein balance and together with the bread and cheese it makes quite a substantial lunch. All the ingredients are of course quite straightforward except we could not find the recommended small pasta shapes in our Sainsburys so we just used small macaroni pasta and found it perfectly okay. As we all know soups need more checking in the seasoning department – again we used the Marigold powder – and after no great deal of effort we sat down to enjoy this dish. In fact the amount provided us with two lunches and the reheated version tasted just as good. We did enjoy the Pecorino cheese so added a fairly generous amount to suit our taste buds. Again, we would not have tried this particular soup without your suggestion John so thank you once again. Thumbs up all round!” Roger and Mary