Wednesday, March 4, 2015

Pasta Fagioli

Pasta e Fagioli
"I had an open can of cannellini in the walk in."

Alex, what is "Why did you decide to make pasta fagioli tonight?" Saturday evening, for Sunday dinner, Ann asked me to surprise her because we were staying in and cooking, a decision taken directly from the weather forecast which predicted a wintry mix all day (but, typical of such forecasts, never came to be). From making another batch of minestrone last weekend, I had the bulk of a huge can of cannellini in the cooler that needed to be used.

While trying to decide what to make, I remember Ann telling me that I went the entirety of 2014 without making her a batch of pasta fagioli, (clearly, she forgets this batch), so I thought that I would  surprise her with one of our favorite comfort foods.

All the Ingredients Save White Wine and Cannellini
Each batch, and there are at least four batches documented here on this blog, is different. In this case, there was too much snow in the garden to go hunting for thyme and sage, so I was content with parsley and rosemary from the cooler. And no time or desire to go shopping for a box of ditalini, so we made do with orzo from the pantry. The mirepoix for this batch was onion, carrot, celery, and a fennel bulb. I always add fennel if I have it, but I usually don't have it. Pancetta is de rigueur, but sausage or bacon would do in a pinch. Lucky for us, I always have a slab or two of pancetta hanging in the cooler and another in the cure. And finally, I cooked the pasta directly in the beans. Ordinarily, I cook them separately. All this is by way of saying, it is a simple pot of beans and pasta and no matter how you make it, it will be delicious.

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