Hearty, bean-y tomato-y soup with pasta and herbs – this is a meal in itself, although it is especially nice with hot bread. We had it with garlic and rosemary focaccia. This recipe is vegan is you leave out the parmesan.

Serves 6

1 onion
3 cloves garlic
3 bay leaves
1 tsp basil
1 tsp oregano
Olive oil
2 carrots
2 parsnips
1 can cannellini beans (or butter beans)
1 can chopped tomatoes
500ml vegetable stock
Pinch sugar
Pinch salt
Double handful pasta
Red wine
Rind from a piece of parmesan cheese (optional)

Peel and roughly chop the onions and garlic. Saute in oil for 5-8mins until softened and smelled delicious. Add the bay leaves and herbs. Peel and chop the carrots and parsnips, and add to the pan.

Add a good splash of red wine and the drained beans. Cook for 5mins.

Add the tomatoes, parmesan rind and stock, then bring to the boil. If using uncooked pasta, add it now. Bring the pan to the boil and then simmer for about 30mins, adding more water/stock as required. If using ready-cooked pasta, add it for the last 5mins of cooking to heat through. Remove the parmesan rind and bay leaves, and serve.


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