My family loves this recipe, especially my 2 yr old who is a bean lover! I add chopped celery and carrots when cooking the onions. I use chicken broth instead of all or some of the water used. I usually use whatever pasta I have on hand, (I prefer it with small elbow macaroni but have never tried ditalini). I bring the water/chicken broth to a boil and cook the pasta until almost done, then I add the beans, tomato sauce, & spices. I usually use a couple of cans of "Organic Soup Beans" which has red beans, great northern beans, barley & lentils; or I'll use leftover fresh pintos and/or a mix of whatever beans I have in the pantry. Sometimes I'll use leftover spaghetti sauce instead of tomato sauce, in which case I cut back on the spices. I always add fresh ground pepper in addition to theother spices listed and I put a tiny bit of crushed red pepper in my bowl (not the pot because it's too spicy for my 2 yr old). I put a bowl of fresh grated Parmesan on the table so everyone can put as much or as little as they want instead of stirring into the pot. This soup is super easy to make, delicious and very flexible. I make it all the time!
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My family loves this recipe, especially my 2 yr old who is a bean lover! I add chopped celery...