Meet the contenders:
The Reigning Champ
I've made both of these recipes a few times now. There is a special place in my heart for the Champion, because the introduction Dynise wrote for this recipe was so heart-warming, I think it actually influenced the flavor of the meal. The recipe appears in the Soup section of her cookbook, but despite the multiple times I've made it, it has yet to even vaguely resemble soup.
That's actually a point in its favor, folks. If you haven't been paying attention, Mister does not love Soup, Mister Loves Pasta.
I was actually a little intimidated by Pasta e Fagioli until I found Dynise's recipe, which she adapted from her mother-in-law. It just seemed so simple and I knew Mister would appreciate it since he does order it whenever we go to Pietro's with his dad. I discovered that making a big pot of nutritious yet simple pasta causes me to think deeply about the state of things, and when I made the Pasta e Fagioli from Vegan on the Cheap, I wrote another treatise on good food and how we shouldn't take it for granted. Pasta brings out the philosopher and sociologist in me, I guess.
The first time I made Isa's Pasta e Fagioli, I managed to refrain from waxing poet on the sad state of affairs and how this one pasta dish will solve all the world's problems. I did so only by focusing completely on how surprisingly good it was. With that in mind, I made it again tonight:
I used penne because I missed the "-ette" attached to it in the recipe. Nevertheless, this Pasta e Fagioli is killer, even with noodles a little too big for the dish. Mister happily plowed through three bowls, barely coming up for air while I savored each bite of my first serving (yes, I did have seconds).
From the first bite, I knew...
...we have a new Champion.