Hi and thank you for visiting my blog. My name is Tina, I am 42 years old and married to a wonderful man named Robert. I live in the Cleveland, Ohio area with my husband and our two pugs, Koko and Lucy and a special kitty, named Trixie.

I am of Italian decent and love to cook not just for my family but for everyone! I have a lot of weeknight dinner guest and try to keep it casual but delicious! My Mom passed away a few years ago and was my great teacher.

In 2012 I have changed the way I eat. A real lifestyle change to be healthier, eat a nutrient dense diet and remove all processed foods, refined flours and sugars from our diet. I do cook a lot healthier than my Mom did and do a lot more vegetarian meals, poultry and fish. I'm trying to find a way to keep the traditions of family, friends and good food in my house always.

I plan to post my weekly menus, update with new recipes, health information and articles and how to eat mostly organic in an economical way. I will also periodically post personal updates of my journey to regain health and hope.

Friday, January 18, 2008

Warm up with Pasta Fagioli

This weekend is suppose to be very cruel and cold. It is going to be a busy weekend with lots to do so I want to make a big pot of soup that we can warm up for meals and snacks. My Dad never liked beans and this is not something my Mom would make on a regular basis. I remember on Sept. 11 as we, like the rest of the nation, stared into the television in disbelief my Aunt Theresa brought a pot of pasta fagioli to my Mom's house and it was all ate the whole day. My version is adapted from many trials and errors of recipes. This pot was especially delicious...I don't know how that happens...but that is the problem of never cooking with recipes.

Pasta Fagioli

1 lb. Ditalini pasta

1/4 cup olive oil

1 large onion, diced

1/2 lb. panchetta, diced fine

4 cloves garlic, diced or minced

3 ribs of celery diced

3 carrots julienned (I buy the bag and use 1/2)

3 14 oz. can of Cannelini beans

8 cups chicken stock

4 cups water

1 Tbsp. oregano

2 Tbsp. black pepper

1 tsp. red pepper flakes

1 14 oz. can diced tomatoes

In a very large stock pot saute onion and panchetta in olive oil until panchetta is cooked through. Add in the garlic, carrots and celery and dry seasonings. Cook until vegetables are just tender, about 2-3 minutes. Add in the chicken stock, I like the Kitchen Basics chicken stock it is lower in sodium than most of the brands that claim low sodium. Add in the tomatoes and bring soup to a full boil. Once boiling turn down to a simmer and simmer for about one hour, stirring occasionally. Add in beans and simmer for another hour. In a separate large pot, boil water and cook pasta according to package directions. Put pasta in a bowl and add about a cup of the soup to keep it from sticking. Serve soup with pasta and enjoy.

TIP: Many recipes tell you to cook the pasta in the soup, in my experiences the pasta absorbs all the soup and you get a more stew like consistency. Also, the pasta tends to turn mushy and overcooked if you add into the soup and re-heat it a few times. I like to keep the pasta and soup separate until serving. It works great!

1 comment:

MrsPresley said...

your pasta looks so hearty and comforting!