1 x 400g tin borlotti or kidney beans in water
4 garlic cloves
1 sprig fresh rosemary
6 sprigs fresh thyme
1 tbsp extra-virgin olive oil
100ml red wine
2 x 400g tins plum tomatoes
1 bay leaf
½ tsp chilli flakes, plus extra to serve
100g dried wholewheat pasta, or broken tagliatelle
250ml vegetable stock
salt and black pepper
Pasta e fagioli – literally, pasta and beans – is a hearty Italian dish, traditionally made using leftovers. We’ve used borlotti beans, which are high in fibre, protein and folic acid, and kale to help you reach your daily greens goal. Treat this as a fridge raid soup, adding whatever veggies you have to use up in your fridge.
FINE GRATER OR MICROPLANE. LARGE SAUCEPAN
First, prep the vegetables. Drain and rinse the tinned beans. Peel and finely dice the onion. Peel and grate the garlic. Pick the rosemary and thyme leaves from the sprigs and roughly chop. Trim and discard the tough stems from the kale, and thinly slice the leaves. Peel then slice the carrots into 3mm-thick rounds.
Now, cook the base of the dish. Heat the olive oil in the large saucepan over a low heat. Add the onion and carrot and cook for 5 minutes until softened slightly. Add the garlic, rosemary and thyme and stir until fragrant. Add the red wine, increase the heat and simmer for 3-4 minutes.
Now, finish cooking the dish. Tip the tinned tomatoes into the pan and break them up with a wooden spoon. Stir to combine, increase the heat to a simmer and cook for 8-10 minutes, stirring every couple of minutes to prevent the mixture catching on the bottom of the pan. Add the tinned beans, bay leaf, chilli flakes, pasta, vegetable stock and water and simmer for 10-12 minutes or until the pasta is cooked and the sauce is thick. Taste and season to perfection with salt and pepper, add the kale and fold it into the sauce for 1 minute until well wilted.
Time to serve! Ladle the protein-packed pasta into two bowls, garnish with chilli flakes and serve immediately.