This is a warming Italian inspired soup, full of flavour thanks to pancetta and sage. It's hearty and filling enough for a meal.
Made it vegetarian. I replaced the pancetta with pre-roasted butternut squash. Just peel it and cut into small cubes, season well and roast until slightly underdone. Then add it to the soup with the beans and pasta. Also used vegetable stock instead of chicken. Fantastic! - 09 Aug 2009
Something else. I add chopped carrot to this recipe for flavour and colour. I also use an immersion blender to partially puree the soup after about 20 minutes of cooking - then I add the pasta to the mix so everything finishes cooking at the same time. I've made this several times over the past 2 months and it always disappears fast - my kids love it! - 24 Jul 2008
Something else. For a slow cooker version, soak beans overnight. Saute pancetta, onions, celery and sage in a frying pan and deglaze with 75ml white wine and add everything into a slowcooker and cook all day on low. Wholewheat pasta optional. (but makes a complete protein). - 24 Jul 2008