Pasta and bean soup(Zuppa di Pasta e Fagioli)

I am feeling that, my knowledge about non Indian cuisines is very low. I am trying my best to learn as much as possible about them . It is very difficult for a person like me, who has not tasted many different cuisines, to search for such recipes without knowing their names. So I asked a person who has a vast knowledge about Indian as well as non Indian food. Most of my food blogger buddies might have known who it is by now, yes it is indeed Pelicano, who has just started his own blog.

This is what he said, “The book this is taken from recommends whole-wheat Italian bread and a salad of endive to accompany this, but personally I never serve bread with a soup that contains a starchy ingredient as I feel this is redundant, and also excessive in simple carbs! I think this soup, paired with a nice salad and followed with a plate of fruit is quite enough for a simple meal”.

He sent me 3 recipes, an Afghani soup – vegetarian mosh awa, an Italian soup – Zuppa di Pasta e Fagioli and one more dish. I don’t know much about pastas. So I picked up wrong pasta every time I went for shopping, though Pelicano gave me the name of pasta to be used in this soup. Anyway, after trying it out with different pastas(all wrong ones), I finally decided to choose the tiniest pastas from grocery store. I searched for it and found tiny “Stars estrellas” – “Pasta alimenticia” (well, I don’t know which is the name of the pasta and which is brand name, so thought of mentioning both). It is a Mixican pasta type, at least the packet says so.

I used the beans which I had. First time I used black eyed beans and next time I used dried green peas. The final result was too good. This is one more exotic soup and tastes heavenly.

1/2 cup dried white beans(navy beans)
1/4 cup chopped onion
1/2 tea spn finely chopped garlic
Olive oil
1/4 cup chopped celery
1/4 cup chopped carrot
1/4 cup chopped sweet bell pepper ( or poblano chile- large dark green)
1 bay leaf
1/4 tea spn oregano
1/4 tea spn crushed/powdered red chili
1/4 cup chopped tomato
2-3 cups vegetable broth
1/2 cup ditalini or other small pasta
1/2 tea spn fresh/dried basil
1 tea spn fresh/dried parsley
Romano or parmesan cheese

I didn’t use celery and pepper, still it turned very good.

Soak the beans overnight and cook them till they are soft.
Heat water and add pasta and little oil. Cook till al dente.
Heat olive oil and add onion, garlic, celery, carrot, pepper, bay leaf, oregano, red chili and saute till onions are translucent. Add tomatoes and fry for few moments.
Add carrots, broth and cook till carrots are soft. Add cooked beans, pasta, parsley and basil.Cook for around 10mins.
While serving, serve with cheese.

Serves :2-3
Preparation time : 40mins

PS: I have changed the proportions of the original recipe to suit taste. I have simplified the procedure.

19 thoughts on “Pasta and bean soup(Zuppa di Pasta e Fagioli)”

  1. Dear Shilpa
    This soup must be really nourishing. I am definitely going to try it out. But please tell me what are white beans are they white vatana which is used for making ragda. Also give me a equivalent Indian substitute for bell pepper. Can I try capsicum, Red or Yellow pepper? Can I substitute Macaroni instead of ditalini which is not available here?

  2. hi,
    its never too late to learn or start anything…now as you start using pastas u’ll learn them gradually…so carry on..
    u can go to a library & look into a pasta book..u’ll find all the details…
    when i was new to this pasta word i thought it was a shape (macaroni)but after i read a book i knew it was a family name for different shapes of pastas..
    u can try lasania…very tasty..lasania is made from sheet shaped pasta .good luck .
    Food has no language,nationality,caste,etc etc..its something universal…

  3. Wow! Nice soup Shilpa! It looks just as mine did!

    I should also tell you, since you are eating chicken again once in a while, that the traditional recipes I’ve seen for this soup use chicken broth- so next time you make this, try it the usual Italian way!

    I think last time I made this I mixed vegetable broth with just a little chicken broth, as I had not eaten any sort of meat for many weeks; either way that I’ve made this, it was a hit!

    I’m glad you like it- you and the hubby may want to go out some night for Italian; there are actually many vegetarian dishes in the cuisine that you may enjoy, as well as seafood and chicken dishes. Or maybe you have tried Italian already? 🙂 I’d recommend “eggplant parmesan/melanzana parmigiana” as an entree if you haven’t tried it yet.

    Your words are so kind Shilpa, but really I often feel as if I know very little; I know for certain that I can make plain daal and good rice, and that is enough to be content!

    Thank you Shilpa… 🙂

  4. Hi Shilpa,

    I am a regular at ur website and have tried many of ur recipes. Thanks.
    Reg the pasta soup, what are navy beans? I live in the UK. Are green peas a good substitute?

  5. Soup looks good Shilpa.Non-Indian recipes are easy compared to our Indian ones which is complex with many spices!:))

    Great job,you will learn quickly.No problem!

    One more thing.I have to put my name,e mail,URL EVERY TIME I leave comment here which takes a little time,can you fix that? Subscribe me or something.Thanks:)

  6. Nourishing…Looks great. Have all the ingredients handy except the celery. Wanted to make pasta today for dinner. Will try this soup instead. Thanks to you and pelicano for sharing.

  7. Hi Shilpa,

    Sounds looks delicious.I like all the soup very much….Your details would be really informative for all novice like me …Thanks.

  8. Hi Shilpa
    New look of the blog is awesome! I wanted to post this comment as soon as I saw the new template but I couldn’t(due to some technical difficulties on your site).
    Glad to know that you started wilton classes and great looking cake too! Looking forawrd to seeing more of those baked goodies!

  9. Shubhada, white beans is called Val in Konkani and it is also called Navy beans. I used green vatana once and next time used alsande/black eyed beans, both tasted very good. You can use capsicum I think. Use any small variety of pasta/macaroni.

    Sangeetha, I would love to go to library and read. But no time to even sit and relax :(. I have tried lasagna few times. I am going to try making it at home sometime. Thanks for your encouraging words, I am sure I will learn more about them at some point in my life.

    Pelicano, We have become great fans of Italian food. We have been going to Italian restaurants a lot these days. Our favorite is alfredo and amelfi so far. I will try eggplant parmesan/melanzana parmigiana next time. Since I know very well about your taste, I am sure I will like it. You are just being shy, you have an amazing knowledge. I like your blog very much.

    Suma, white beans/navy beans are also called cannellini, great northern, val. I used dried green peas and alsande(black eyed beans). Both turned out very good.

    Yes Asha, You are right. Non Indian recipes are very easy to cook. I like to cook them once in a while when I am running out of time.
    I will see if I can do something about comments. I use firefox for browsing and it saves mail id/url in cache. So I don’t type them every time. Thats a good solution for almost all the blogs which needs such inputs. Please give a try.

    Thanks Bee.

    Swapna, let me know if you try it.

    Aruna, you can ignore celery if you don’t have it. I didn’t add it. It still tastes very good.

    Thanks Usha.

    Sia, I din’t cook dinner when I prepared this soup. It was so filling that never felt like eating anything more.

    Deepa, let me know if you try it.

    Arjuna, yes, the new template had few bugs. I hope I have solved them all. I came to know about Wilton classes from you. Thanks a lot. I enjoy them so much.

    Thanks Pelicano.

    Thanks Deepa.

  10. I thought the RSS feeds had got messed up when I saw pasta in Aayis Recipes feed! Shilpa! I am so proud of you!! Way to go!

    It looks and sounds delicious!

    Like Pel says, if you try chicken broth, look for organic or free range chicken broth with low sodium.

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