by The Culinistas

Winter is the peak season for citrus, and this zuppa brings the lemon zing.  Pasta e fagioli, meaning “pasta and beans”,’ is a traditional Italian pasta dish. But since we like to put The Culinistas spin on everything, we’ve made ours bright & green.

Prepped and ready in under an hour, this vegan citrus soup will certainly shake off the winter shivers while promoting immune health.

Lemony Pasta Fagioli

Prep Time: 10 minutes

Cook Time: 40 minutes

Serves 4 to 6

CHEF TIPS

Shopping:

– A 19 oz can of cannellini beans is 2 ½ cups.

– One large bunch of escarole is about 4 cups, chopped. 

Technique: 

– Soak escarole briefly in cold water, before & after chopping, rustling gently to remove grit. 

– If you are not serving the soup immediately after cooking, pack pasta & soup separately; add pasta as needed when heating up. 

Extra Ingredient:

– Combine zest from lemon with 1 cup olive oil for lemon-infused oil to use on salads or to drizzle on finished dishes.

2 TB olive oil

1 large leek, sliced into rings 

3 garlic cloves, thinly sliced

2 tsp onion powder

¼ tsp cayenne 

2½ cups cannellini beans

½ lb ditalini pasta

4 cups escarole, chopped

⅓ cup lemon juice

Salt & freshly ground pepper, to taste

Sumac, for garnish

1. In a dutch oven, heat olive oil over medium low heat. Add leek, garlic, onion powder, cayenne, salt & pepper; sweat until fragrant, 3-5 mins. 

2. Add cannellini beans & their liquid. Add 3 cups of water & simmer; 15 mins. Add escarole, cover & simmer; 20 mins. 

3. While soup is simmering, cook pasta: In a pot of boiling, salted water, cook pasta until al dente, 8-10 mins. Reserve.

4. Add 1 cup of soup to a high speed blender & blend until smooth; return to dutch oven.  Remove from heat, stir in lemon juice & pasta. Season with salt & pepper.

5. Ladle soup into bowls & garnish with sumac.

Onion Powder, Cayenne, and Sumac are a chef’s secret weapons. Check out our eComm shop to purchase our favorite brand.