It’s entirely possible Mother Connie was Italian in another lifetime. Oh, what delight there is in a bowl of pasta noodles, a salad featuring macaroni or a soup full of any kind of pasta product ever made! Pasta is inexpensive and easy to make into whatever strikes your fancy. Soup is wonderful on the cold days mid-February gives us so here today is an idea we hope will hit you like a brick:
BEAN AND PASTA SOUP
2 cans cannelini beans, drained and rinsed *If you use white Northern beans, the Kitchen Police will not arrest you but it won’t be as authentically Italian…
1 can whole tomatoes, juice and all
2 ribs celery, roughly chopped
1 or 2 cloves garlic, finely minced
2 cups chicken broth *water will work, if you have no broth but the flavor your soup will not be as rich and the Kitchen Police don’t really care which you use…
2 tablespoons vegetable oil
1/2 cup pasta of choice *macaroni is Mother Connie’s fave but even rice would work if you are in a pinch. Pasta swells as it cooks…
salt and pepper to taste
basil leaves – fresh if you have them but dry basil will flavor it nicely
4 tablespoons Parmesan cheese
Place beans, tomatoes with their juice, celery, garlic into a good sized soup pot. Add the broth + one cup of water. Bring to a boil. Cover, reduce the heat to medium and simmer for 10 minutes. Add the oil and the pasta, then boil UNCOVERED for about 8 minutes, or until the pasta is tender.
**Mother Connie places a wooden spoon over the pot of cooking pasta to prevent boil overs.
Add the basil, salt and pepper. Be sure to taste so you know if it needs more seasoning. When you are satisfied with the flavors it is ready to ladle into soup bowls or soup plates.
Put the cheese on the table to be passed so each diner can top his own soup to suit his taste.
Are you living on a dime? Do you scrimp by every month using an EBT card from WIC or SNAP? Do you used food commodities? Food pantry food? Food from a food bank? Are you stretching your food budget to the max every month because you love the challenge of doing all you can with your food dollars? This blog is meant to help YOU, no matter who you are or how you fit into this grocery budget business. Ya gotta EAT, after all…
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