Pasta e Fagioli

Literally meaning “pasta and beans,” this stick-to-your-ribs comfort food is a popular—and naturally vegan—Italian dish that tastes even better the day after it is made. This is my mom’s recipe that she served every week. It tastes quite similar to what I had in Italy, but without the Tuscan ambiance.

Serves 4

What You Need:

  • 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • 2 or 3 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 28-ounce can crushed tomatoes
  • 1 16-ounce can cannelini beans, drained and rinsed
  • 1/4 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1/4 teaspoon dried basil
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 2 cups water (or more, if needed)
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 8 ounces ditalini or other small-shaped pasta
  • 1 tablespoon fresh parsley, minced
  • Grated soy Parmesan (optional)

What You Do:

  1. Heat the oil in a large pot over medium heat. Add the garlic and cook until softened, about 2 minutes. Reduce heat to low and stir in the tomatoes. Add the beans, oregano, basil, bay leaf, water, and salt and pepper to taste. Simmer over low heat for about 30 minutes.
  2. Meanwhile, cook the pasta in a pot of boiling salted water, stirring occasionally, until it is just al dente (about 5 to 6 minutes). Drain well and add to the bean mixture along with the parsley. Simmer gently for 10 minutes to blend flavors and finish cooking the pasta. Season more if desired.
  3. To serve, ladle into bowls and sprinkle with soy Parmesan.

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