Pasta Fagioli (Giada original recipe) is a really, really good soup. And it was so easy. I used to buy a soup that came in a bag from Alessi that tasted similar to this, but of course, this is so much better. That was before I conquered soup. I used to be very afraid, of making soup. But when I discovered chicken stock, it was a game-changer!
I made a few changes to the recipe: instead of two cans of red beans, I added 1 can red and 1 can white and I’m glad that I did. It was a nice variation. I also added a can of diced tomatoes and that worked out well, too. I used a whole box of chicken stock and didn’t have to open a second one!!
We had this with bread for dipping and it made a very satisfying meal! Do try this one soon, if you haven’t before!
Pasta e Fagioli Ingredients
- 4 sprigs fresh thyme (I used dried, about 1 tsp.)
- 1 large sprig of fresh rosemary (Dried again, 1/4 tsp.)
- 1 bay leaf
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1 tablespoon butter
- 1 cup chopped onion
- 3 ounces pancetta, chopped
- 2 teaspoons minced garlic
- 5 3/4 cups low-sodium chicken broth (I used a full box, which was 4 cups.)
- 1 14.5 oz. can diced tomatoes
- 2 (14.5-ounce) cans red kidney beans, drained and rinsed
- 3/4 cup elbow macaroni
- Freshly ground black pepper
- Pinch red pepper flakes, optional
- 1/3 cup freshly grated Parmesan
- 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
- 1 rind Parmesan Cheese (I just let this soak for a while at the end and then took it out.)
- The original recipe tells us to wrap herbs (bay leaf, thyme, and rosemary) in a piece of cheesecloth and secure closed with kitchen twine, but I didn’t do this. I just put them in the soup and took the bay leaf out at the end.
- In a heavy large saucepan heat 1 tablespoon olive oil and butter over medium heat. Add garlic, onion, pancetta, and saute them for about 3 min until the onion is tender.
- Add the broth, beans, and sachet of herbs and cover. Bring the soup to a boil over high heat, then lower the heat to medium and simmer for 10 minutes until the vegetables get very soft.
- Discard the sachet. Puree 1 cup of the bean mixture in a blender until smooth*.
- Before putting the puree back into the soup, add the macaroni and boil with the lid on until it is tender but still firm to the bite, about 8 minutes.
- Place the puree back into the soup in the saucepan and stir well. Season with freshly ground black pepper and red pepper flakes.
- Ladle the soup into bowls. Sprinkle the soup in each bowl with some Parmesan. Before serving drizzle the soup in the bowls with extra-virgin olive oil.
When you’re blending hot liquids, don’t do it when they are just from heat:
- let the liquid cool for at least 5 minutes.
- In a blender or food processor, fill the bowl with the hot liquid no more than halfway.
- If you use a blender, release one corner of the lid to prevent the vacuum effect and eventual heat explosion.
- Cover the top of the machine with a towel, pulse a few times to try, and only then process at high speed until smooth.