Pasta e fagioli, which translates to “pasta and beans” in Italian, is a classic Italian stew that combines the heartiness of beans with the comforting allure of pasta. This dish, with its rich blend of aromatics, crushed tomatoes, fresh herbs, and leafy greens, is a true Italian comfort food. Here, we present a vegetarian pasta e fagioli recipe that’s easy to prepare and will warm your soul.
The Essence of Pasta e Fagioli
Pasta e fagioli may sound deceptively simple, but it’s a flavorful concoction that’s far greater than the sum of its parts. If you appreciate the goodness of homemade minestrone soup or a hearty marinara sauce, pasta e fagioli will surely find a place in your heart and kitchen.
This recipe is designed for convenience, utilizing canned beans to cut down on cooking time. It’s a perfect choice for a relaxed weeknight dinner that comes together in about an hour.
Crafting the Perfect Pasta e Fagioli
To create an exceptional pasta e fagioli, the method is key. Here’s a step-by-step guide to achieving the best results:
1. Sauté the Aromatics:
- Begin by sautéing finely chopped onion, carrots, and celery in olive oil. This forms the flavor base of the stew, imparting a rich depth of taste.
2. Add Garlic and Tomatoes:
- Introduce garlic, being careful not to overcook it to avoid the bitter taste of burnt garlic. Add crushed tomatoes and let them simmer, allowing their flavors to flourish.
3. Incorporate Broth and Herbs:
- Pour in vegetable broth and water, along with bay leaves, dried oregano, and red pepper flakes for a kick of spice. Simmer to meld the flavors.
4. The Blending Step:
- This optional but highly recommended step involves blending a portion of the hot liquid with some of the beans. This yields a creamy texture that elevates the dish.
5. Pasta, Greens, and Herbs:
- Add the remaining beans, pasta of your choice, Tuscan kale, and Italian parsley to the simmering stew. Cook until the pasta and greens reach the desired tenderness.
6. Flavor Enhancement:
- Finish by drizzling the stew with fresh lemon juice and olive oil. These final touches enhance the flavors significantly.
A Pasta e Fagioli Variation: Pasta e Ceci
For a delightful variation, try pasta e ceci, which means “pasta and chickpeas.” This version replaces the beans with chickpeas, offering a unique twist on the classic pasta e fagioli.
Explore More Soups
If you’re a fan of hearty soups and stews, you’re in for a treat. Besides this pasta e fagioli recipe, you might also enjoy:
- Classic Minestrone Soup
- The Best Lentil Soup
- Seriously Good Vegetable Soup
- Homemade Vegetarian Chili
- Quinoa Vegetable Soup with Kale
We’d love to hear about your experience with this pasta e fagioli recipe. Feel free to share your thoughts in the comments.
For more culinary inspiration and delightful recipes, visit Crooked Beverage Co.