Pasta e Fagioli, or pasta and beans, includes extra-virgin olive oil, pancetta, cannellini beans, tomato sauce and ditalini pasta. Rosemary, thyme, bay leaf, onion, celery and carrot are also used, according to a Food Network recipe. The remaining ingredients are chicken stock, garlic, salt and pepper and grated Parmigiano cheese.
To prepare this version of the meal, brown three slices of chopped pancetta lightly in two tablespoons of olive oil. Add two sprigs of rosemary, one spring of thyme, one large fresh bay leaf and four large cloves of chopped garlic. To this, add one medium onion, one small carrot and one rib of celery, all chopped. Season this mixture with salt and pepper.
Add two 15-ounce cans of cannellini beans, one cup of tomato sauce, or crushed tomatoes, two cups of water and one quart of chicken stock and bring this mixture to a rapid boil over high heat. Add 1 1/2 cups of pasta, reduce heat to medium and cook six to eight minutes for the pasta to reach al dente firmness. The herb stems and bay leaf should be removed prior to serving. Pasta e fagioli should be served with grated Parmigiano cheese on top, explains the Food Network.
The recipe takes 10 minutes to prepare and 20 minutes to cook and can yield six big portions. It is suggested to serve the dish with crusty bread for dipping. This well-received recipe was featured on Rachael Ray's 30 Minute Meals show on the Food Network.