Soup weather will soon be a thing of the past. Having a sick kid home for 3 days gave me a reason for this soup to be my winter swan song. This was a "what do I have in the pantry that can become soup" kind of recipe. That's the great thing about soup. It's not all persnickety about weights and measurements. It's got a the-more-the-merrier kind of attitude. And it doesn't even mind when you've worn your pj's for 3 days straight and watched every episode of The Suite Life on Deck with Zack and Cody.
Pasta e Fagioli Soup
1 T olive oil
4 ounces pancetta or bacon (I had some guanciale in the freezer), diced
1 medium onion, finely chopped
2 celery ribs, diced
2 cloves garlic, minced
a pinch or two of crushed red pepper
1 tsp dried oregano
1 28 oz. can of whole or diced tomatoes
5 cups of stock (I used 2/3 chicken stock and 1/3 beef stock because that's what I had and needed to use up)
1 cup of water
1-2 Parmesan rinds (I keep these in the freezer when I finish a piece of parmesan-they add great flavor to soups)
2 15 oz. cans white beans (like cannellini), drained
1 1/2 cups of dried pasta (I used elbows)
salt to taste
1. Put 1 T olive oil in dutch oven and cook pancetta or bacon until cooked.
2. Add onion and celery and cook until softened.
3. Add garlic and saute. Do not let it get brown or cripsy.
4. Add your pinches of red pepper, oregano and can of tomatoes.
5. Add stock and water and parmesan rind and bring to a boil.
6. Add salt to taste.
7. Add beans and pasta and cook until pasta is done, about 10 minutes.
8. Sprinkle with grated parmesan and serve.
If pasta absorbs too much of the liquid once the soup sits, add more water or stock.