Easy Bean Soup

1 onion, chopped
2 or more sliced carrots
1/2 T fennel seed
1/2 T Italian seasoning
2 cloves minced garlic
2 T olive oil
2 14oz cans of (vegetarian) vegetable broth
1 cup water
1-1/2 T tomato paste
3/4 t. "Better than Boullion Vegetable Base" or other vegetable boullion.
1/2 cup of your favorite Pasta Shapes
1 14oz can of cannelli or other light colored beans
1 14oz can of red kidney beans
Ground black pepper to taste
1/2 cup of chopped parsley

Saute onion, carrot, fennel seed and Italian Seasoning in olive oil. When the onions are soft and have begun to color, add the garlic, and saute for a minute or two, being careful not to burn the garlic.

Add 2 cans of vegetable broth, plus 1 cup of water, tomato paste and vegetable boullion.

Simmer about 20-30 minutes.
Add Pasta and cook 5-7 minutes
Add 1 can of cannelli or other light colored beans and 1 can of red kidney beans.
Season with black pepper if desired. DO NOT ADD SALT without taste testing first. Most boullion products and canned foods contain plenty of salt to season the soup.

Heat for another 3-4 minutes
Stir in chopped parsley before serving

Variations: add fresh chopped kale or greens before the "simmer" stage.  For an even less expensive version, soak and cook dried beans instead of using canned.  Add fresh sage and/or rosemary.

Serve with fresh bread, toast or crakers. This is great comfort food.

***Tip: Read the labels on your canned beans and vegetable broth if you wish to avoid animal products. "Natural Flavorings" can be animal derived.

Links to fascinating articles about what is in the food you eat. Of course, you may never want to eat fast food again.

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