1/3 pound pancetta, chopped
1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
4 garlic cloves, crushed
2 teaspoons dried thyme
1 teaspoon dried rosemary
2 carrots, to be chopped
1 medium yellow onion, to be chopped
2 celery ribs with greens, to be chopped
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
1/2 cup dry white wine
3 cups chopped fresh dandelion greens (1 small bunch)
1 head of escarole, chopped
2 15-ounce can small white beans or cannellini, drained
1 15-ounce can diced tomatoes in juice, San Marzano variety if available
6 cups penne pasta
Grated Parmigiano-Reggiano or Romano cheese, to pass at the table
Heat a soup pot over medium-high heat. Add the EVOO and the pancetta.
Add the wine and deglaze the pan, scraping up any good bits. Wilt in the greens and escarole in bunches.
My daughters have been at their grandma's house for 4 days, and they came home today. I really missed them, probably because I haven't been away from them for about 8 months. Anyway, I made this meal for us and my sister-in-law and her husband. It made a lot! It was supposed to be 4 servings, but everyone had 1 or 2 bowlfuls and there was still so much left over! So I changed it to 6 servings. I changed the recipe to call for dried herbs instead of fresh, and I changed the ingredients that were called to be chopped to say "to be chopped" instead of already chopped. I did that because RR says to add the vegetables to the pan "as you chop" them. The flavor in the soup was very good; the pancetta adds a lot of flavor. Everyone liked it, but my brother-in-law didn't like the dandelion greens :) I thought they were fine in the soup, although I don't like them by themselves.
Rachael Ray says, "This is a mix-up of pasta e fagioli and minestra. Again, my indecisiveness is at play."