Pasta Fagioli in a Thermos
by Stella Zedman
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Who doesn't love a piping hot lunch on a chilly day? This healthy, hearty stew, packed with pasta shells, kidney beans, chicken broth and plenty of veggies, is just the thing to warm a kid up from the inside out.
- 1 tbsp. (15 mL) olive or vegetable oil
- 1 medium onion, chopped
- 1 stalk celery, diced
- 1 carrot, diced
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 can (28-oz./796-mL) diced tomatoes, with juice
- 2 cups (500 mL) chicken or vegetable broth
- 1 tbsp. (15 mL) dried basil (or 3 tbsp./45 mL chopped fresh basil)
- 1 tsp. (5 mL) crumbled dried oregano
- 2 cups (500 mL) water
- 1 can (19-oz./540 mL) white kidney beans, drained and rinsed
- 1 cup (250 mL) small dried pasta shells (or other small-shaped pasta)
- salt and pepper to taste
- Heat oil in a large saucepan or Dutch oven over medium heat. Add onion, celery, carrot and garlic and cook, stirring, for 5 to 7 minutes or until onion is softened. Add tomatoes, broth, basil and oregano. Bring to a boil over high heat, then cover, lower heat to low and let simmer for about 30 minutes.
- Stir in water, beans and pasta and return to a boil over medium-high heat. Cook, stirring once or twice, for 5 minutes or until pasta is almost tender. It will continue to soften in the liquid, so undercook it slightly so that it doesn't turn mushy. Taste and adjust seasoning with salt and pepper, if necessary.
- Spoon into thermos and pack a small container of grated Parmesan cheese to sprinkle at lunchtime.
- The soup will thicken when it's refrigerated, so you may have to stir in a bit of additional broth or water when you reheat it.
How kids can help
Help chop vegetables for the soup.
Older children (10 and up) can stir mixture as it cooks.
Measure and add ingredients, as needed.
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