Penne & Chickpea Soup
  Re: (...)
I needed something cheap and easy for mealtimes during the prepping for Sat. party and boy, did Cook's Illus. come thru. This soup is nothing special - everything in the pantry/herb garden, but so tasty. We had ham & jarlsburg panini with it. Will have it again tonite.

Penne and Chickpea Soup

Recipe By: from Cook's Illustrated

1/4 cup olive oil
4 ounces bacon or pancetta -- diced fine
4 medium cloves garlic -- peeled and bruised
1 sprig fresh rosemary
2 cans diced tomatoes (about 2 cups) -- (14 1/2 ounces each) with liquid
2 cans chickpeas (about 3 cups) -- (16-ounces each) drained and rinsed, and 1 1/2 of the 3 cups mashed with a fork
2 teaspoons table salt -- plus extra for seasoning
8 ounces penne pasta or other short pasta
1 tablespoon chopped fresh rosemary
Ground black pepper
Pecorino Romano cheese -- freshly grated
1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil (optional)

Heat olive oil in large soup kettle or stockpot over medium heat. Add bacon or pancetta; sauté until browned, 4 to 5 minutes. Add garlic and rosemary sprig; sauté until fragrant, about 2 minutes longer.

Add tomatoes with their liquid, whole and mashed chickpeas, 6 cups water, and salt; bring to boil. Reduce heat and simmer to blend flavors, about 10 minutes.

Add pasta; cook until tender, about 10 minutes. Remove rosemary sprig and add chopped rosemary; adjust seasoning with salt and ground black pepper, and serve, passing grated cheese and olive oil, if desired, separately.

MAKE AHEAD TIP: In early a.m. I put this soup together thru the step of "Add tomatoes with their liquid, whole and mashed chickpeas, 6 cups water, and salt; (and don't bring to a boil)." At this point I put it in the frig. At diner time I just heated it up, let it 'stew' for 10 min and then added the pasta - dinner's ready!!

first made 11/9/06

"Great soup for last minute and very economical - Serves 6 to 8 as a main course" (well, maybe not - Roy had 4 bowls... )

What a great recipe to keep handy during all our holiday preparations.
Retired and having fun writing cookbooks, tasting wine and sharing recipes with all my friends.
  Re: Penne & Chickpea Soup by cjs (I needed something c...)
Thanks for this recipe, Jean. I just love soup and make a pot at least once a week in the cooler weather. This one sounds delicious.

"Drink your tea slowly and reverently..."

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