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Game Day Meal: Canada vs USA Edition – Pasta e Fagioli

By on December 28, 2012 in Game-Day Meal

by Amy Johnson, Managing Editor,

PHILADELPHIA, PA — Oh, the weather outside is frightful… I know the holidays are over, but that’s one line in a Christmas carol that’s still pretty relevant!  Even if your neighbourhood isn’t already buried in snow drifts, I’m sure you can feel the deep freeze every time the networks show an exterior shot of the arena and surrounding areas in Ufa, Russia for the 2013 IIHF World Junior Hockey Championship.

021The tournament is in full swing, with Team Canada slated to take on Team USA for the first time in an important match-up this weekend.  If you’re a die-hard fan, you might be setting your alarm clock and the coffee pot timer to catch the game live at 4:30 a.m., but if you choose to watch it on replay later in the day then a warm, hearty bowl of soup will be the perfect accompaniment!

Pasta e fagioli is an Italian pasta and bean soup that is traditionally a meatless dish, but many variations include ground meat or meat-based stock.  My favourite version of this soup is actually found at a popular Italian restaurant chain, so I was pleasantly surprised to find this “knockoff” recipe that tastes just like what is served at the restaurant!

This recipe makes enough soup to freeze some of it for another day – just make sure you don’t freeze the soup with the pasta in it.  Just freeze the soup “base” and then make fresh pasta to stir in when you thaw and reheat.

Pasta e Fagioli
Recipe courtesy of

Prep time: 20 minutes, plus cooking time
Makes 9 quarts (or 8.5 litres)

3 tsp vegetable oil
2 lbs ground beef
12 oz chopped onion
14 oz slivered carrots
14 oz diced celery
48 oz canned diced tomatoes
2 cups canned red kidney beans
2 cups canned white kidney beans (also known as cannellini beans)
88 oz beef stock
3 tsp oregano
2 1/2 tsp pepper
5 tsp fresh chopped parsley
1 1/2 tsp Tabasco sauce (I used Cholula hot sauce)
48 oz marinara sauce
8 oz dry ditalini pasta (or any small pasta)

1. Saute beef in oil in large pot until beef starts to brown.


2. Add onions, carrots, celery and tomatoes and simmer for about 10 minutes.



3. Drain and rinse beans, then add them to the pot.



4. Also add beef stock, oregano, pepper, Tabasco, and spaghetti sauce. Add chopped parsley.


5. Simmer until celery and carrots are tender, about 45 minutes. Cook pasta in a separate pot about a minute less than the package directions, drain, and stir into soup. Simmer for 5 more minutes, then serve!


Have you got an outstanding game-day meal (or any recipe, really) that you’d like to share with our readers? Email to find out how your recipe could be featured on!

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