Welcome to my BlogSpot. I have created this blog in hopes of inspiring everyone to cook. I have found my inspiration from living in both Southern and Northern California. My influences in flavors have come from family recipes and meals with emphasis on healthy foods, marrying into an Italian family and the ethnic flavors throughout California. There are so many wonderful memories connected to our family dishes as well as new memories in the dishes that have been recently created. My husband, Randy who is recently retired, has been my biggest supporter and inspiration in our kitchen. He is my taster, my sous chef, and has created some really great dishes himself, which will be added to this blog. It is my hope that you too will be inspired to cook and create your own dishes for your loved ones and enjoy the craft of cooking.

One thing I ask of you is if you print out, email and pass out my recipes, please include my name and link.

Be sure to check out my Sweaty Equities blog about the ups and downs of crafty projects and our DIY remodels.
You can find it at http://sweatyequities.blogspot.com/

Monday, May 21, 2012

Randy’s Pasta e Fagioli

This is another one of those fabulous Italian recipes that Randy grew up with. Throughout the years he’s tweaked some of the ingredients and spices thereby perfecting this dish with the freshest of ingredients. You will need to start this dish the night before by soaking your beans in 4 times the water overnight. The next day give yourself a few hours to simmer the beans until soft, before you start the rest of the dish.
If you are intimidated by doing your beans from scratch or don’t have the time for soaking and cooking, you could always go and get 4 or 5 cans of Great Northern beans, which is totally fine, but the effort into starting your beans from scratch makes a huge difference in the freshness.

Randy’s Pasta Fagioli
1 Pound Great Northern Beans –soaked in water overnight
1 Pound Penne Pasta, cooked to al dente
¼ Cup Extra Virgin Olive Oil
½ Teaspoon Crushed Red Pepper
1 Onion, diced
6 stalks Celery -hearts of celery with leaves included is best for optimum flavor
6 Carrots, thinly sliced
1 Teaspoon Dried Oregano
1 Teaspoon Dried Basil
Salt and Pepper
6 Cloves Garlic, finely chopped
¼ Cup Flour
½ Cup White Wine
2 Bunches Swiss Chard, Cleaned, de-stemmed, and roughly chopped
2 Tablespoons Olive Oil
Salt and Pepper
1 Quart Vegetable Broth
Parmesan Cheese for Garnish
Let’s start with the beans. Place them in a large pot and fill with 4 times the amount of water and allow to soak overnight. The beans will grow to about 3-4 times in size. Drain and rinse the beans, place back in the pot and fill up to 3 inches above the bean line with water. –Just water, nothing else and let simmer for about 3-4 hours or until the beans are soft. –You should be able to easily squeeze them between your fingers. Once they are soft enough, add 1-2 tablespoons of salt. Stir and taste and add more salt if necessary. Set aside the beans but do not drain. The broth in the beans is used for the dish.
Now start your pasta water. Add salt and olive oil to the water and bring to a boil. When you’re about 10 minutes away from serving your dish, add your pasta and cook according to package directions to al dente. When combining all the ingredients, the pasta will cook a bit more.
In a large pot, add ¼ cup extra virgin olive oil, crushed red pepper, the diced onion, celery, carrots, oregano, basil and White Spice Rub then sauté until the onions are translucent. Add the garlic and cook for 2 more minutes. Stir in the flour and cook for 1 minute. Stir in the white wine and Swiss chard. Drizzle 2 tablespoons olive oil over the chard, then season with salt and pepper and cook until tender, stirring occasionally. Add the vegetable broth and bring to a light boil, thoroughly stirring to incorporate the flour mixture with the broth. It should thicken a bit. Add this mixture to the bean mixture and bring to a light boil for about 5 minutes. Taste to see if salt is necessary. Drain the pasta and add to the bean, vegetable mixture. Let stand for 10 minutes. See if any more broth or water needs to be added if it starts to thicken up too much. It should be a thick soupy consistency.
Garnish with Parmesan cheese.
Can be served with Easy Cheesy Garlic Bread.
-Randy Tronti

1 comment:

  1. Looks and sounds yummy, Randy. I was going to make pasta y fagiole this week if you can believe it!