Monday, November 3, 2008

Pasta e Fagiole

Mmmm....soup. I heart soup. Thick, hearty, stomach-filling soups. But I rarely eat it when I go out. I'm a big believer in that soup must be homemade. And lately I've been watching way too many reality TV shows about restaurants (can you say Kitchen Nightmares?) to know that most things in restaurants are not homemade.

While pregnant, I went to the Olive Garden for the Soup & Salad lunch deal with a few coworkers. I had the Pasta e Fagiole for the first time (first time ever...not just at the OG) and I fell in love! I soured the internet looking for a copycat recipe and found this one. It's not the same as the OG, but its pretty damn good.

12 oz extra-lean ground beef
1 cup celery, finely chopped
1 cup carrot, finely chopped
1 cup onion, finely chopped
4 cloves of garlic, minced
1 (12 oz) can of V8 juice
1 (15 oz) can of tomato sauce
1 (28 oz) can of diced tomatoes
1 (15 oz) can of cannellini beans, drained
1 (15 oz) can of kidney beans, drained
1 1/2 teaspoons dried basil
1 1/2 teaspoons dried oregano
1/2 teaspoon dried thyme
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
1 (15 oz) can of fat-free, low sodium beef broth
4 oz diatali macaroni

Heat a large stock pot over medium heat. Add beef; break up and cook until cooked through. Drain fat.

Add celery, carrot, onion and garlic and saute for about 10 minutes. Add remaining ingredients, except macaroni, and bring to a boil. Turn down heat to low and simmer for one hour.

After 50 minutes, boil macaroni and cook to al dente. Drain well, and add to soup. Simmer for 10 minutes.

Yields 8 hearty servings.

WW info: 5 points per serving.