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Wednesday, April 6, 2011

Creamy Pasta e Fagioli

Matthew and I went to dinner at the famous Kim and Ellory's back in the winter of 2009 (wow, Kim, can you believe it was that long ago?!?!?!) and Kim and Ellory's daughter, Veronica was in from Italy, and she introduced me to my first taste of Pasta e Fagioli, which happens to be a family recipe.  I had never had Pasta e Fagioli before, and it was fantastic, and I have been trying to make it ever since...it never turned out as good as theirs, even though Veronica was kind enough to give me their recipe.  Well, after trying it a number of times, I found a recipe I like, using a combination of their recipe and a recipe from FoodandWine.com, my go to site for so many of my recipies...so here it is, creamy, with a little bit of bite and a lot of flavor!

Creamy Pasta e Fagioli

In a large saucepan, bring:

3 c. low sodium chicken stock
1-4 oz. slice of prosciutto

to a boil.  Add:

1/3 c. orzo

until half way done to al dente, about 4 minutes.  Strain the broth into a heatproof bowl.  Pick out the prosciutto and dice it, putting it aside.  Reserve the orzo separately, as well.  Using the same saucepan, heat to a medium heat and add:

3 oz. pancetta, diced

Heat, stirring occasionally, until browned.  Add:

1/2 medium onion, thinly sliced
1 carrot, diced
1 celery rib, diced
2 garlic cloves, thinly sliced
1 rosemary sprig
1/2 tsp. crushed red pepper
1 bay leaf

Cook over medium heat, stirring occasionally, until the vegetables are lightly browned, about 6 minutes or so.  Add:

1 T. tomato paste

Mix together until combined.  Add:

Strained broth

Cover and simmer until the vegetables are tender, about 8 minutes.  Discard the rosemary sprig and bay leaf.  Put half the broth mixture and half:

1 can cannellini beans, drained and washed

into a blender, and blend until smooth.  Put the blended mix back into the pot, and add the remaining beans, reserved orzo and chopped prosciutto.  Cook until heated through, and orzo is al dente, about 4 minutes.  If you want so more creaminess, add some:

Crumbled Goat Cheese

On top of each bowl.  This is not required, but I loved it!  Sooooooooo yummy!!!

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