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pasta e fagioli

There are many ways to make this soup but this version, inspired by Marco Canora, is my favorite. I love puréeing some of the beans and adding them to the soup to give it a deep, rich texture. I also chop everything the same size to match the size of the pasta but you can use any kind of pasta you like here.

1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil, plus extra for drizzling

1 slice pancetta (or bacon), finely diced
1/4 onion, finely diced
Salt, to taste

Freshly ground black pepper
1 clove garlic, finely minced
1 teaspoon fresh rosemary, finely minced

1/2 teaspoon tomato paste

1 1/2-2 cups low-sodium vegetable stock

1/2 15-ounce can cannellini beans, rinsed and drained

2-3 ounces ditalini pasta (or other small tubed pasta)
Freshly grated Parmigiano-Reggiano, for serving

1. In a medium saucepan, heat olive oil over medium heat. Add pancetta (or bacon) and cook until just browned. Add onion and season with salt and pepper. Cook until onion is softened, about 5 minutes. Add garlic, rosemary and tomato paste and cook for another 1-2 minutes. Add 1 cup stock and deglaze pan, scraping up browned bits on bottom of pan. Add 1/2 of beans and simmer for about 15 minutes.
2. Place remaining 1/2 of beans in a blender and purée with just enough water to get blender going (you want mixture as thick as it can be). Transfer mixture to a saucepan and stir to incorporate into soup.
3. Meanwhile, bring a medium pot of salted water to a boil. Add pasta and cook for about 7-10 minutes, until al dente. Drain and add pasta to soup (reserving about 1/4 cup of pasta water). Add a little pasta water or more stock to soup if too thick.
4. Transfer to a serving bowl and top with Parmigiano-Reggiano and a drizzle of olive oil. Serve warm.

Serves 1.

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