Sunday, 14 October 2007

Pasta Fagioli Soup (without Pasta!), Roasted Garlic and Salad

I don't even know where to start with this one..... so many thoughts and in some ways - so much unconnected history behind the recipe that follows. So, I may as well get to the recipe quickly. It's healthy, mostly protein and if I may so - delicious! Perfect for these cold days - though, surprisingly - we had a great weekend in London. Almost warm and the sun was shining!

The meal consisted of Fagioli soup, roasted garlic + red pepper 'spread' with bread and some salad on the side. In my books, this meal falls into the express cooking category.

Pasta Fagioli Soup
2 cans of Cannellinni (white) beans - I used dry beans and pressure cooked them in water for about 30 minutes the day before...
1 large can of chopped Italian Tomatoes
5 cloves of garlic, mashed
1 tablespoon of chopped fresh Italian herbs - use your favourite - I used oregano and basil
1 carrot - cut into little squares
Freshly ground Black Pepper to taste
1/4 cup smallest macaroni like pasta - if you want the pasta

In a heavy sauce pan, heat olive oil over low-medium heat. Add the garlic and saute until fragrant. Then add the herbs and black pepper and saute for another minute. Add in the beans and the tomatoes, mix well. If you thinner soup, add some water. Bring to a boil and add in the carrots and then add salt to taste. If you want pasta in the soup, add in just before serving, allowing 5 minutes of cooking time. Garnish with Parmesan and Basil leaves.

This is the only time I would recommend using canned tomatoes - the canned Italian tomatoes seem to be more juicy than fresh ones and have a tinge of sweetness- just the right touch for the soup.

Roasted garlic with Red Pepper Spread

Take as many garlic cloves as you think you will enjoy; cut off the top 'hard' part and rub olive oil over the freshly cut ends. Wrap in foil, put into the oven and bake for about 20 minutes at 150-180 degrees. I popped in the bread to warm at the same time. When you pull out the garlic cloves, quickly check that they have gone soft. If soft, they are done. Let them cool for a few minutes and then squeeze the garlic from the skins. Mash the roasted garlic slightly and add crushed red pepper, mix well and have with some warm bread. It warms the body and if I can stretch the imagination for garlic lovers - warms the soul :) !


Sushama said...

yumm soup...This is a definite on my list ,now that fall/winter is here (as said its still warm, but that not for long !)
Oven bakes garlic and warm bread sound soothing...but Im skeptical to try the oven coz everything I put in there seems to turn black and nothing lighter in shade :((
but apart from that, soup is yummmmmmmmmm

The Passionate Palate said...

This is a great idea for a soup. I always make pasta e fagioli, but there are days when we don't want to eat pasta. I can't believe I never thought of this. The garlic looks yummy too!

Dwiana P said...

Hello, thanks for stopping by to my blog. Great recipe you have here. I may have to try this who know my son who is lately become a picky eater will like this one.

Kate said...

oh i simply love pulses. Even as a child my parents never had problem with trying to feed me a bowl full of these protein rich beans. You garlic and pepper mash looks amazing. i can see my self definately making it....roasted garlic mmm ...crusty bread...double mmmm...:p

M&Ms... said...

Sushama - lucky you with the warm weather. Come on, give the oven a try :)
Passionate Palate - stumbled on it by pure chance, ran out of small pasta once and had already begun the soup! Yup..sometimes forget to check for ingredients before starting..oops.
Dwiana p - Thanks. Hope you score with the soup and your son. Good Luck. :)
Kate - Thanks. Love to hear a soup recipe from you one of these days, am sure it will be yummy!

Anh said...

I love the meal, especially with that roatsed garlic... Food of comfort!

M&Ms... said...

Thanks Anh!!