whole black peppercorns
potatoes, scrubbed, peeled, and coarsely chopped
celery ribs, coarsely chopped
carrots, peeled and coarsely chopped
1/4 teaspoon dried thyme or 4
fresh thyme sprigs
bell peppers, red, green, yellow, orange, chopped
garlic cloves, crushed
dried chili pepper flakes
2 (28 ounce) cans
1 (16 ounce) cans
1 1/2-2 cups
( short, chunky pasta is good)
salt & fresh ground pepper, to taste
- Part One: The Broth.
- Remove the papery skins from the garlic heads and break them into cloves.
- Whack the cloves with the broad side of a wide knife.
- Combine everything up to and including the thyme in a large pot and bring to a boil.
- Cover, lower the heat, and simmer for an hour.
- Strain the stock and use right away, or refrigerate in a sealed container for up to four days, or freeze up to six months.
- Part Two: The Soup.
- Sauté onions in oil, until they are starting to soften.
- Add carrots, peppers, zucchini, garlic, basil, oregano, chili flakes, and turn down to medium-low and cover, stirring frequently, until the veggies start to soften a bit.
- Add diced tomatoes and broth, and season with salt and pepper.
- Bring to a simmer, cover, and allow to cook for 45 minutes or so.
- Add drained and rinsed beans.
- Add pasta, and cool immediately or pasta will start to break down and fall apart.