Welcome to my blog. My blogging journey began about in August 2009 as a photo-a-day blog which has since transitioned to combine my love of good food and photography. Today, using as many local and fresh ingredients as we can, my boyfriend and myself spend time researching recipes, making our own adaptations, cooking, taking photos, eating, and finally reflecting on all or part of the above listed process here. I hope you take the time to not only read and look at our photos, but please cook some of the recipes yourself. You are invited and encourage to leave feedback as we continue our culinary journey!

Saturday, October 15, 2011

Pasta e Fagioli

Hey everyone! I'm back to writing for the blog because Laura just ran a marathon, so she's been busy with other stuff. I know that it has suddenly become warm again, but until a week and a half ago it seemed like winter was coming already, and we were all set into 'soup' mood. (As you can probably tell from the last couple of blog entries...)
Anyway, this is my traditional Italian soup contribution:
Pasta e Fagioli
1/2 lbs dried beans
1/2 can tomato paste/crushed tomatoes/tomato puree
olive oil
100 gr flour
1 egg
We used black beans because we had those lying around, but feel free to use pinto beans or whatever you prefer. If you are using dried beans, you will need to soak them in water at least half a day in advance (I put them in a covered bowl full of water in the morning to cook them for dinner). If you are using beans from a can, you will need to count twice or three times as many beans.
After the beans are done soaking, you should boil them for around an hour and a half. While that happens, chop the onion and celery and heat some oil in a pan. Once the oil is hot, cook the celery and onion together until they start getting soft. At that point, add the tomato (whatever form of tomato you prefer is fine, we had
an open can of tomato paste, so that's what we used), salt, a good amount of pepper and some rosemary.
When you can find some time, you should make some fresh pasta (just like in a previous recipe) with that flour and egg. Roll it as thin as it goes and then cut irregular triangles out of it (this is what are called 'maltagliati' literally 'badly cut'). If you are lazy and/or don't have a pasta maker, you can just buy some pasta, in that case I would recommend something small like mezze penne or elbows (definitely not spaghetti nor fettucine).
Once the beans are boiled for long enough, take half of them out of the water and put them in a blender or food processor until they become a paste. Then dump them, together with the rest of the whole beans and the water you boiled them in, in the pan where you had the onion/celery/tomato cooking. Salt some more and let it all boil together covered for 20 minutes.
If you have fresh homemade pasta, you can at this point put it into the pan with everything else for 2-3 minutes and it will be ready. If you are using pasta from a box, instead, you will have to boil it separately and then add it to the rest of the soup once it's done.
Serves 4 people. Don't forget to have some parmesan on the table to grate on top of the soup!


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