White Pasta e Fagioli

How to make White Pasta e Fagioli

Ingredients

4 slices smokey bacon, medium dice

3 celery stalks, diced

½ white onion, diced

4 chopped garlic cloves

1 large can cannellini beans, 1 lb. 13 oz or 2 regular sized cans, drain half of the liquid

½ lb. of ditalini pasta or something similar that size

a handful chopped parsley

a generous handful of grated parmesan cheese

chicken stock in a box, or homemade if you have it, not quite a whole quart or depending on desired thickness

a pinch of red pepper flakes to taste

black pepper and salt to taste

olive oil

Instructions

Drizzle olive oil in the bottom of a heavy pot to cover.

Cook the diced bacon until it gets slightly, crispy golden.

If it’s too greasy, remove and drain on paper towel, wipe out pan and add more olive oil and return the cooked bacon.

Toss in the the garlic, onion and celery, cook til it softens, add in your red pepper flakes to taste (optional).

Throw in the beans with the remaining liquid in the cans.

Stir well, then pour in the chicken stock.

Get it to a boil then simmer it for 15 to 20 minutes, it should thicken to the right consistency on its own, if it doesn’t thicken enough I take my immersion blender and do a quick blitz on the side, not too much, just enough to puree some of the beans to act as a thickener.

In the meantime boil the pasta on the side, a’dente then drain it.

Turn off heat when soup is finished, add a big handful of grated parmesan and chopped parsley.

Add a little bit of the pasta, reserving most of it for your individual bowls, this way the pasta won’t blow up in the hot soup and you can take as much as you want for your bowl.

Taste for seasoning on everything.

Ladle into bowls adding a drizzle of olive oil, more cheese, black and red pepper.

Enjoy!

Nutrition Information:

Calories:  350 | Protein: 15 grams | Fat: 15 grams | Saturated Fat: 5 grams | Trans Fat: 0 grams | Carbohydrates: 40 grams | Dietary Fiber: 8 grams | Sugars: 3 grams | Cholesterol: 20 milligrams | Sodium: 800 milligrams | Calcium: 200 milligrams | Iron: 3 milligrams

Frequently Asked Questions:

Can I use a different type of pasta in this recipe?

Yes, you can use any small pasta shape you prefer.

Ditalini is traditional, but small shells or elbow macaroni work well too.

Is there a substitute for bacon in this recipe?

You can use pancetta, turkey bacon, or omit it altogether for a vegetarian version.

Adjust seasonings accordingly.

Can I use vegetable stock instead of chicken stock for a vegetarian version?

Absolutely, vegetable stock is a great alternative, making this dish suitable for vegetarians.

How can I reduce the sodium content?

Choose low-sodium or no-salt-added canned beans and use a low-sodium or homemade chicken stock to control sodium levels.

Is there a gluten-free option for the pasta?

Yes, you can use gluten-free pasta to make this dish suitable for those with gluten intolerance.

Can I make this soup ahead of time?

Yes, you can prepare the soup in advance and reheat it.

However, add the pasta just before serving to prevent it from becoming too soft.

Can I freeze the leftovers?

Freezing may alter the texture of the pasta, but you can freeze the soup without the pasta and add freshly cooked pasta when reheating.

How do I adjust the thickness of the soup?

You can control the thickness by adjusting the amount of chicken stock. Add more for a thinner soup and less for a thicker consistency.

What type of Parmesan cheese works best?

Freshly grated Parmesan cheese adds a rich flavor.

Use Parmigiano-Reggiano or Pecorino Romano for an authentic touch.

Can I make this soup dairy-free?

Skip the Parmesan and replace the bacon with a plant-based alternative to make a delicious dairy-free version.

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