Tuesday, October 6, 2009

Momma's Pasta Fagioli ( Pasta and Beans)

Momma remembers some recipes that were a combination of two regions of Italy and they are truly tummy warmers.

Momma Explains: As my relatives settled in America, they adapted many recipes to the ingredients available here rather than in their country of origin. Also, people who had originally emigrated from different regions of Italy found themselves sharing and exchanging traditional recipes. As a result there are several versions to the same recipe. Here is the pasta fagioli recipe that I remember my grandmother making. It is inexpensive but just so hearty and a real tummy warmer. This is meatless and I prefer it that way.

Momma's Pasta Fagioli: Take your favorite large sauce pan, add some olive oil - enough to thoroughly cover the bottom of the pan and saute a medium, finely chopped onion, when opaque add three cloves minced garlic, and 1/4 cup chopped flat leaf parsley. If I have fresh thyme, I add some for more herbal flavor. Let cook a few minutes and add two cups chopped escarole, or spinach. Cook until soft, it should only be tender not mush. Then dump in two cans of cannellini beans( water and all) . Stir and add three cans of College Inn chicken broth. Then salt and pepper to taste. Let simmer while you cook the pasta. In a large pot, boil your water for one pound of ditalini. (It is a small macaroni and kids love it) Make sure you add a good toss of salt to the water when it boils and then cook your pasta till al dente, drain and add to the bean gravy. Simmer a few minutes and serve. I enjoy Bovo, Chardonnay Inzolia from Sicily with this hearty pasta dish.

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