This is comfort food at its best – and great value too. Thick, chunky and robustly flavoured, serve steaming bowlfuls when it's icy outside and you need to keep chills at bay.
*A little smoked bacon is good in this soup – gently cook 1 chopped, rindless rasher with the onions or you could add some chunks of cooked ham to the finished soup to make a main meal. Using ham stock will add extra flavour. *This soup can be made ahead. Prepare the soup to the end of step 2, then cool and chill. Reheat to a simmer before adding the pasta.