Pasta e Fagioli alla Baroncini


  • 1 carrot
  • 1 or 2 ribs of celery
  • 1  yellow onion 
  • Pancetta (or bacon)
  • 1 c White wine 
  • 2 cloves of Garlic 
  • Crushed red chili flakes (to taste)
  • A can or two of beans (I used borlotti but pinto or kidney would work great too)
  • 1 tbsp tomato paste
  • Pasta, 250g or half a box/bag  (shells are best but any pasta will work, this is a souply dish so you want something that will hold in the sauce)
  • Salt (to taste)
  • Pepper (to taste)
  • Water (about 7 cups-ish)


  1. First you will want to make a soffrito.  To do this finely dice your carrot, a rib or two of celery and a medium white or yellow onion.  Toss them into a pan with olive oil and add in a couple whole cloves or garlic and some crushed red chili flakes if you want some spice.
  2. Cook this all on medium heat for about 5 minutes then add the pancetta.  Cook the pancetta with the veggies until its nicely browned (about 5 more minutes) and then deglaze the pan with about 1 cup of white wine.  Let this simmer down and once the liquid is mostly gone add in the beans. Let the beans cook another 5 or so minutes with the veggies until they just start to break down a bit.  
  3. Add in about 7 cups of water.  It needs to be enough to cover the pasta you are about to use.
  4. Crank up the heat and when it comes to a boil add in your teaspoon of tomato paste.
  5. Add in your pasta and cook according to the directions on the box for cooked, not al dente.  It will take a minute or two longer than normal to cook in this broth.  
  6. Once the pasta is finished turn off the heat and let it sit for another 10 minutes or so to thicken up.
  7. Salt and pepper to taste, top with a drizzle of EVOO and eat with a nice crusty bread for dipping if the spirit moves you.


This is more of a method than an exact science.  Add what you like and as much of it as you like. If you don't eat meat leave out the pancetta and this is a gorgeous vegan recipe. Have fun, be creative! 

Pasta e fagioli is considered “cucina povera” a poor working class meal meant to satisfy people expending lots of energy on the farm or doing manual labor.  This type of cuisine is usually my favorite in Italy. It’s hearty, simple and delicious. This exact recipe is courtesy of Pia and Davide Baroncini. Davide is Sicilian and Pia is from Los Angeles.  They are a married couple and post these adorable cooking videos on instagram in conjunction with their respective clothing brands. Its a delight to watch them cook together and get their insight into recipe variations between Davide’s Sicilian upbringing and my husband Pasquale’s Puglese upbringing.  Pia has been a supporter of Della Pace since the beginning and we absolutely adore her. If you are on Instagram and want to check out these videos you can find them at @lpa xoxo, Caroline


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