Summer Rice Salad – Insalata di Riso

When the days are warm and sunny like today, I dont feel like staying indoors, even less to be cooking (or attempting to, as many of you pointed out my Aubergine Pie looked a bit burned….), so I open the fridge and proceed to empty its content in my version of a rice salad. My sisters laugh at it, but we quite enjoy it, it is very healthy with 6 or 7 different veggies, it can be vegan or vegetarian, just add only veggies and use Olive oil to dress. And let’s face it, very little cooking, minimum washing up, what’s there not to like….anyway try my “all goes in rice salad” , don’ t be put off by the long list of ingredients, it’s really very quick to do.

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Quick Pasta with beans (Pasta e fagioli)

Pasta with beans is a very old and traditional Italian recipe. It’s a rustic, peasant dish, poor but incredibly tasty. There are many variations of this dish, depending on the geographic area: the recipe I am sharing now is originally from Campania, in the South of Italy.

The traditional recipe requires the use of dry beans, left to soak overnight, and then cooked on the stove for an hour and a half. Unfortunately, I find it very hard to be so organized as to actually prepare the beans the night before, so this is my shortcut for those times in which I feel like eating a rustic, fulfilling, healthy pasta, but I am short on time: I use tinned beans, and I cut out the veggies!

This pasta makes also a great soup, especially if you use smaller pasta shape, it’s very budget friendly, AND it only uses one pot, a win/win really!

I will soon post also the traditional recipe of this dish, but for the moment I leave you to this super quick pasta with beans. If you try it let me know if you like it.

Enjoy!

Tip: if you use rosemary, it’s worth buying fresh, better even if you have it in your garden. You can always freeze what you don’t’ use. I find dry rosemary doesn’t have much flavour, you end up using more of it.

Ingredients for 4 people:

350 gr Pasta Shell

1 tin cooked beans

Salt

A good dash of olive oil

A sprig of rosemary (optional)

chilli or pepper (optional)

Method . Cooking time 10 mins.

1) Empty the content of the tin of beans in a large pot, add some boiling water, salt, chilli and rosemary if using.

2)  When the water is back to the boil add the pasta, make sure the water covers all the pasta

3) When the pasta is cooked, drain excess water if you prefer it more “dry”, or leave it as it is for a soup version.

4) Add a very generous dash of olive oil, better if extra virgin

Pasta with beans soup

5) Dish out and enjoy.