Pasta e Fagioli is a traditional, rustic Italian soup that, true to its name, contains both beans and pasta. There are many variations around the basic formula, some containing only white beans and penne or farfalle noodles, while others contain greens, kidney beans and elbow noodles. Here is one delicious and wholesome lacto-vegetarian variation that you can use with your Lucky Iron Fish.
Note: Don’t be afraid to add your own twist! If you'd like to further lower the salt content, switch to low sodium canned tomatoes. To make this a vegan choice, trying using nutritional yeast instead of parmesan cheese.
Prep Time: 40 minutes, including time to sauté
Cook Time: 45-60 minutes
Total Time: 60-75 Minutes
- Add the vegetable broth to a medium saucepan with the lemon juice. Bring broth and lemon juice to a boil with the Lucky Iron Fish. Simmer for 10 minutes. Remove the Lucky Iron Fish from the pot and set broth aside for later.
- Heat the olive oil in a large saucepan or stockpot over medium-high heat. When it is hot, add the onion, carrot and celery. Reduce the heat to medium and sauté, stirring frequently, until the onions become translucent, about 5 minutes. Add the garlic and cook another minute, stirring often.
- Add the balsamic vinegar and stir until it has nearly evaporated.
- Pour in the broth, pepper, 1 can of beans, lentils, diced tomatoes, bay leaves and parsley. Bring to a boil over medium-high heat. Reduce the heat to medium-low and simmer, uncovered, until the lentils tender, about 15-30 minutes.
- While the soup is simmering, purée the remaining can of beans. Set aside.
- Once the lentils are tender, add the dried pasta to the pot. Stir to combine and boil gently. Cook until the pasta is al dente (tender but still firm), about 8-12 minutes. Remove and discard the bay leaves.
- Stir the puréed bean mixture into the soup. Cook briefly, until the soup is heated through and stir in the Parmigiano-Reggiano.
- If the soup is too thick, gradually add more broth or water to the desired consistency.
- Season with salt and pepper to taste, and serve topped with chopped fresh parsley and sprinkled with Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese. Serve immediately.