Monday, September 17, 2012

Sunday Supper: Pasta e Fagioli with sausage

Sunday suppers when I was growing up were always special. Roast beef with Yorkshire pudding, dad always made his famous whipped smooth mashed potatoes that were like velvet. Sometimes it was ham or a big pot of simmering pasta sauce. Regardless, it was a day when no matter what was going on, we came together for a hot hearty meal as a family and the house smelled of comfort all day. I love the idea of Sunday Suppers, but it does not mean it has to be a roast with all fixings. It's about bringing the family together, enjoying comfort food. This Sunday I decided to tackle my version of pasta e fagioli.

Traditional pasta e fagioli is a vegetarian Italian soup meaning "pasta and beans." I had some Italian sausage on hand so I adapted it into the soup which did in fact make it heartier and it was a great simple, healthy and comforting Sunday supper served with garlic toast. This is one of those everything but the Kitchen sink soups where really you could use whatever beans and veggies you have on hand. For this recipe I started with a bulb of fennel, some carrots and an onion.

Chop up 1/2 cup carrots, 1/2 cup fennel, 1 small onion

In a large pot sautée the veggies with about a pound of Italian sausage casings removed.


Add a generous tablespoon of VE Marinara sauce mix, typically used to season pasta sauce but has a wonderful Italian aroma that is perfect for this soup. 2 cloves fresh crushed garlic. Another generous tablespoon of VE Tomato Parmesan Cheeseball mix and some freshly ground VE Herb and Garlic Sea Salt.

Add 4 cups prepared VE chicken boullion, 1 (28 oz) can of diced or crushed tomatoes and 1 can (18 oz) of rinsed canellini or navy beans. Bring to a boil.

Stir in 1 cup of small pasta, traditionally dialini is used but I had some elbow macaroni on hand and used that. Lower the heat and simmer until al dente.

Serve with a sprinkle of Parmesan, a drizzle of evo ( extra virgin olive oil) and some bread on the side for mopping up all that goodness. Hubby went up for thirds and the kids loved it too! Celebrate some old traditions or create some new ones, with Sunday Supper!


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