Pasta e Fagioli Salad
Pasta and bean soup, brought to the New World by our Italian ancestors,
is a very rewarding, substantial cold weather meal. Surprisingly, the
same combination lends itself very ell to the cold salads that are so
welcome during the summer months. Add this to your next outdoor meal,
along with cold roast chicken, for a real treat.
Makes 6 servings
1 cup dried beans, such as cannellini, navy, or Great Northern, picked
over, soaked overnight, simmered until tender, and drained, cooled to
2 cups cooked pasta shapes, such as small elbows, bow ties, or rotini,
drained, cooked to room temperature
1/4 pound thinnest green beans, topped,
tailed, and steamed until crisply tender; or 1 cup thawed frozen
thinnest green beans, at room temperature
2 large ripe tomatoes, peeled, seeded, and chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced
1/2 small red onion, thinly sliced
2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
1.3 cup extra virgin olive oil, plus traditional to taste
Salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
3 to 4 tablespoons chopped fresh basil
Freshly grated Parmesan Cheese
In a large bowl, toss together the
drained beans and pasta.
Add the green beans, tomatoes, garlic,
and onion and toss.
In a small bowl, mix together the
vinegar, olive oil, salt and pepper.
Pour this dressing over the vegetables.
Toss to coat. Chill at least 1 hour.
Serve at room temperature, tossed at the
last minute with the basil and more olive oil if needed. Pass the
cheese and a pepper mill separately.
You can also use 2 cups canned beans here instead of soaking and
simmering dried beans. Drain and rinse the canned beans before adding
them to the recipe.