This Italian bean and pasta soup is one of my fall/winter favorites and is almost a meal all by itself.  After cooking the beans,  a third to a half of them are pureed and then returned to the pot to thicken the soup. A dried whole wheat pasta in small shapes (such as cavatelli), is cooked separately and then tossed into the soup just before serving. Each bowl is garnished with a drizzle of extra virgin olive oil and a grating of Parmegiano Reggiano. I have never found that I need much more than a small salad and a slice of toasted wheat bread to “go-with.” I offer the suggestion of a pear as dessert, but I really didn’t want anything else, so I didn’t bother.

Purcell Mountain Farms organic cranberry beans cooked with a mirepoix, spices, herbs, and tomatoes and tossed with whole wheat cavatelli
Lettuce with creamy dressing and radishes
Toasted house-made whole wheat bread
A perfect pear