Thanksgiving is over, so here I am taking down my fall decorations and, getting ready to put up my Christmas lights. We are having unusually warm weather here so, I also spent several hours in my garden cutting back my raspberries. I was then able to get my bushes in the front yard covered with some netting to protect them from the deer. In the midst of all my work, I was looking for something easy and comforting for dinner. We have eaten leftover turkey for the last few days, and quite frankly, I am not in the mood for more turkey in any form. All those rich foods have left me craving something warm and satisfying. I will be making a turkey soup this week, but tonight I decided on making Pasta Fagioli. A favorite in my house! This is an easy dish to prepare and, when served with some nice crusty Italian bread, it's just about as good as it gets.
Pasta e Fagioli is pronounced many different ways, depending on the Italian dialect. It is considered a peasant dish. If you have a chunk of parmesan cheese in your possession, cut off the rind and cook it along with the vegetables. It gives the soup a wonderful flavor.
|A pot of comfort and satisfaction|
|So nice for a cold day|
Pasta e Fagioli
(Macaroni and Bean Soup)
2 cups either ditalini, small shells, or elbow macaroni
2 Tbsp. olive oil
2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
1 onion, chopped
1 ½ Tbsp. parsley, finely chopped
2 to 3 fresh basil leaves
½ teaspoon salt
¼ teaspoon black pepper
2 cups plum tomatoes, chopped coarsely
1 can with liquid cannellini beans (I use Progresso)
1 qt. of warm water
grated parmesan cheese
In a large heavy saucepan heat olive oil and saute onion, and garlic till tender about 5 minutes. Add tomatoes, basil, parsley, salt and pepper and simmer 10 minutes. Add warm water and beans and bring to a boil. Cook about 10 more minutes. Stir in the pasta and boil uncovered for 10 to 12 minutes or until the macaroni is cooked; stir frequently to keep from sticking. Serve hot and top with grated cheese. If desired you could add crushed red pepper. Serve with some crusty Italian bread.