I like to have a big batch of soup on hand so Christopher and I both have something that requires no more than a few minutes in the microwave to eat at work.
Chili is a favorite, as is some kind of chicken enchilada or tortilla soup or chicken noodle, which I recently made from two carcasses and some basic veggies from the fridge and freezer.
Pasta e fagioli might be a new favorite. Pasta e fagioli, or “pasta and beans,” is an Italian peasant dish and ranges in consistency from satisfying soup to hearty stew or pasta-and-sauce dish.
Pasta e fagioli
This soup is comfort in a bowl. Its bright, tomato broth; toothsome beans and creamy cheese tortellini combine for a warm, nutritious and satisfying soup, perfect for a cold winter night or a sick-day lunch.
1 teaspoon olive oil
4 cloves garlic, minced
1 tablespoon minced rosemary
7 tablespoons tomato paste
1/4 teaspoon salt
5 cups chicken broth
3 cups water
2 1-pound packages frozen cheese tortellini
3 cups cooked chickpeas (or other white bean; cannellini beans are preferred)
4 cups chopped spinach
1/4 cup grated parmesan cheese
Heat the olive oil in a large stock pot over medium heat. Sauté the garlic until garlic until it is fragrant, about 2 minutes. Add the rosemary, tomato paste and salt and heat the mixture until it begins to “melt” into a sauce.
Add the chicken broth and water and bring to a boil. Add the tortellini and cook the pasta according to the package directions. Add the chickpeas, spinach and parmesan cheese and allow the spinach to wilt into the soup and everything to heat through.
I was so pleased with how this soup turned out; it’s so simple yet so flavorful and satisfying. Christopher and I gobbled this up in a week, and we looked forward to a bowl every day.
I definitely would prefer it with creamier cannellini beans, but I didn’t mind the chickpeas (They’re all I had on hand in the bean department.); they retained a little chew and offered a contrast in texture to the tortellini.