I am so excited about this post, because it’s my first time taking part of “The Secret Recipe Club”.  If you haven’t heard about it, it is a group event in which each month you are assigned one food blog to cook a recipe from and another blogger will be matched with your blog.  The assignments are distributed a few weeks in advance, but every post must be published on the exact same day and  at the exact same time!  How cool is that? 😉

This event grew so much that now they have 4 different groups with “reveal days” a week apart.  Today is THE DAY for group D. By the way, we are all newbies in this group, this is the first reveal for our group.  I was assigned the blog Tami’s Kitchen Table Talk, and you can visit her nice virtual spot by jumping here.  Tami not only is a member of The Secret Recipe Club, but the hostess of group D, so of course it added a lot of hyperventilation to my first time in the event.  Getting to cook from your boss’ blog, so to speak…  WOW!

Tami has two kids, 8 and 13 years old, so her blog is perfect for those with young kids and/or teenagers, who must face all the stresses of an extra-busy life, and still bring a nice meal to the table.  In her blog, you will find a lot of sweets, cookies, and countless options to feed the whole family.   I spent quite a bit of time reading it, and finally decided to make her “Pasta e Fagioli”.  First, because it is a classic Italian recipe I’ve always wanted to try. And second, because the weather is perfect for it right now. Since I have no choice but accept that the days of temps in the upper 90’s are over, I might as well make soups and stews… 😉

(slightly modified from Tami’s Kitchen Table Talk)

2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
1/4 cup pancetta, diced
2 (4 to 6-inch) sprigs rosemary, left intact
1 tsp dried thyme leaves
1 large fresh bay leaf
1 medium onion, finely chopped
2 small carrots, finely chopped
1 rib celery, finely chopped
1 clove of garlic, chopped
salt and pepper
1 (15 ounce) can cannellini beans
1 + 1/2 cups crushed tomatoes  (with juices)
2 cups water
1 quart chicken stock
1 + 1/2 cups ditalini pasta  (I used half ditalini, half elbows)
grated Parmigiano cheese for serving

Heat a deep pot over medium high heat and add oil and pancetta.  Cook until the pancetta pieces are golden brown, add the rosemary, thyme, bay leaf, chopped veggies and garlic.   Season everything lightly with salt and pepper (pancetta is already quite salty, so keep that in mind).

Saute everything together for a couple of minutes, add the beans, crushed tomatoes, water, and chicken stock.  Increase heat to high, when boiling add the pasta, and reduce to medium heat.   Cook stirring every once in a while, until the pasta is al dente (8 to 10 minutes).  Remove the rosemary stems and the bay leaf before serving.

Laddle soup on bowls, and serve with a nice piece of bread, with plenty of cheese grated on top.


to print the recipe, click here

This was a perfect meal for an unexpectedly chilly evening, in which we almost had to turn our heating system on.   One of the reasons we didn’t was this warm and soothing soup, that made us feel all cozy and comfy.  Thanks, Tami! Leftovers  were my lunch for the two following days. On the last day, it became almost a regular pasta dish, I did not add additional liquid, just shaved some more cheese on top and enjoyed it immensely that way too.   The beans give extra creaminess and substance to the dish,  and the pancetta a subtle “meaty” presence.

If you want to go make this soup vegetarian-friendly, simply omit the pancetta, and  use vegetable stock instead of chicken broth.  It will still be wonderful, I guarantee it.

Tami, it was nice to “meet” you through this event, I will be  reading your culinary adventures from now on!

Note added after publication: at the end of this post you will find a little icon with “Links in collection” – just click on it to see the full list of blog posts from our group, all published this morning, at 7am US central time. And if you want to see who got my blog, click here to visit Jenni’s siteShe made one of my favorite recipes!😉

ONE YEAR AGO: Mesmerizing Lemon Bars

TWO YEARS AGO: Pizza Napoletana

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  1. This does look very comforting. I especially like the pancetta. There’s just something about pancetta in soup and sprinkled over warm dishes. Love it! I also like the idea of soup leftovers for lunch. Easy and warming!


  2. What a fun event (love the simultaneous posting) – and, agreed, we have no choice but to surrender to the weather… and this soup would be perfect right about now!! Love all the veggies and cannellini beans are simply delicious! I’d say you passed your first assignment with flying colours! Very nice job Sally.


  3. I like your choice…that’s definitely one of my favorite soups! Making a pot of soup that lasts thru a week of lunches is ideal for me! What a fun event and that you all simultaneously post…wow!!


    • Isn’t it mind blowing the “at the same time” thing? When I first joined, I didn’t pay attention to that detail, though that everyone would post on the same day, but at their own pace. Nope. It’s like a magical firework popping all over at the same time…😉


  4. I’m from Group C but I’m an honorary Group D this week. Welcome to SRC. Ha you and I need to collaborate sometime…The Kitchen Witch and The Bewitching Kitchen…we could make magic together. I’ll bring the cauldron…hehe. I make a version of this with pepperoni and garbanzo beans instead of cannellini, it’s such a satisfying dish.


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