Saturday, November 20, 2010

Pasta e Ceci-Warmth for a Cold Winter

I went outside of my comfort zone on this one and you know what? I was quite pleasantly surprised. This is one bowlful of fall/winter LOVE. Originally, I thought I wouldn't like this soup simply because it sounded like it needed to have sausage in it for it to be substantial enough, (even though it has garbanzo beans in it, which I love). I was so wrong! Warm, comforting, and fulfilling is all I can tell you. If you get snow where you are, this is a real warmer upper. For those of you unfamiliar, in Italian ceci is garbanzo.
This is all I,I,I,-ME,ME,ME as Michael is not a fan of beans, nor is he much of a soup fan. I, on the other hand am a fan of both. I have an entire shelf in our freezer in the garage dedicated to a soup stash for the winter. It is now half filled and I still have more I want to make and blog. Coming up in the near future I will be blogging my Butternut Squash and Black Bean Soups (already in there keeping my Potato Soup company). I also am wanting to make some French Onion Soup, Chicken Tortilla Soup, and some varieties of chowders (Corn Chowder is one) to stash away for these cold winter days ahead.

This really is a simple recipe. It takes no time to cook if you prep your veggies in advance. The reward is priceless. If you would like to, you could add a grilled sandwich or salad to this and call it a meal. I found it to be perfect for lunch with some good bread for dipping. Anyway you decide to serve this up, you will surely be as surprised as I was. Also, if you are a vegetarian you can certainly adapt this recipe to your own dietary needs.

Pasta e Ceci
Courtesy Giada De Laurentiis' Everyday Pasta

4 sprigs fresh thyme
1 large sprig fresh rosemary
1 bay leaf
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 tablespoon butter
1 cup chopped onion (1 medium onion)
3 ounces pancetta, chopped
2 garlic cloves minced
6 cups low-sodium chicken broth
2 (14.5-ounce) cans garbanzo beans, drained and rinsed
1(14.5-ounce) can diced tomatoes, with juice
3/4 cup ditalini (thimble-shaped pasta)
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1/3 cup freshly grated Parmesan
1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil

Wrap the thyme, rosemary, and bay leaf in a piece of cheesecloth and secure closed with kitchen twine. Heat the olive oil and butter in a heavy large saucepan over medium heat. Add the onion, pancetta, and garlic and saute until the onion is tender, about 3 minutes. Add the broth, beans, tomatoes, and herb sachet. Cover and bring to a boil over medium-high heat, then decrease the heat to medium and simmer until the vegetables are very tender, about 10 minutes. Discard the sachet.
Transfer 1 cup of the bean mixture to a blender and reserve. Add the ditalini to the soup pot, cover and bring the liquid back to a boil. Boil gently until the pasta is tender but still firm to the bite, about 8 minutes. Puree the reserved bean mixture until smooth, then stir the puree into the boiling soup. Season with salt and freshly ground black pepper.
Ladle the soup into bowls. Sprinkle with some Parmesan and drizzle with extra-virgin olive oil just before serving.
Makes 4 to 6 servings.(I cut the recipe in half, unsure of whether I would like it)

This could be spiced up a bit with a sprinkle of red pepper flakes if you wish. I will be trying that with my next bowl.

I am submitting this to:
I Heart Cooking Clubs Fall Favorites with Giada
Kahakai Kitchen for Souper Sunday's
Presto Pasta Night #191 hosted by Denise at Oh Taste n See originated by Ruth of Once Upon a Feast
Saturday Swap
Coolbook Sundays

Pasta e Ceci-Warmth for a Cold Winter

Warmth and comfort in a bowl. Pasta and garbanzo beans come together in a wonderfully falvored broth. Found in Giada De Laurentiis’ Everyday Pasta cookbook.

See Pasta e Ceci-Warmth for a Cold Winter on Key Ingredient.

Pasta E Ceci-Warmth For A Cold Winter on Foodista
Carla and Michael


  1. Carla I am with you, beans and soup all the way! I can't wait to make this one. Thanks.

  2. Oh, this soup really good for the cold weather...looks yummy! Thanks for dropping by!

    BTW, I like you kitchen, looks lovely for me!

  3. I love this soup--so nourishing and hearty--perfect comfort food. A great pick for IHCC and thanks for sending it to Souper Sundays too.

  4. I'm not a hige fan of soup, but I do like all things garbanzo. And I like both thyme and rosemary with beans. Might have to try this!

  5. This sounds like a cozy soup to cozy up too! :)

  6. This does sound like the perfect warm-me-up recipe for the season...pretty delicious ;) I'm looking forward to the Tortilla Soup...

  7. Thanks for sending this comforting bowl to PPN. It's snowing right now in Seattle...and how I'd love to have a bowl of this goodness with me.

  8. I love new soup recipes and this sounds so great! Thanks so much for including it in Saturday Swap. Can't wait to try this. Have a super start to your week!!

  9. This is totally the kind of soup that I love - I've now got this one bookmarked for the return of cooler weather - though, I actually I think I would like this anytime.
    Sue :-)

  10. Bean fanatic that I am, I know I'd love this soup! And, no sausage means that you can have extra bread. LOL! Can you tell that I love my carbs? This looks delicious-great choice.

  11. I would love to find a decent Chicken Tortilla Recipe so I definitely will stop back by and I think this recipe would be a good change of pace for us.(new follower)

  12. Carla, so nice to meet you! This recipe looks absolutely amazing and is something I would like to try - YUMM!

  13. Hi Carla and Michael! Nom, Nom, Nom, this is perfect for the cold weather. Pure comfort.

    I gave you an award today!

    Have a happy, healthy Thanksgiving!

  14. What? He doesn't like soup?! Yikes...we are both soup eaters here, everyday fro lunch. Love it. This is a great Giada recipe that will be on my must try list :-)

  15. I'm in the same boat as you are... my Honey isn't a soup fan either... unless it's thick and hopefully this one will turn him around. Thanks for sharing with Presto Pasta Nights.

  16. I'd saved a recipe for pasta e ceci awhile back and have yet to make it. This looks so good, I've got to finally give it a try.

  17. Giada makes the best soups! I have a few favourite soups from her. This looks comforting and delicious. Thank you so much for linking up to Cookbook Sundays and my apologies for not visiting you sooner. I hope you're having a great week!


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