For the pasta and beans use dried cannellini beans or white beans of a similar sort that have been stewed one day in advance after leaving them to soak in water for a whole night. Boil them lightly and extremely slowly in plenty of water with a few garlic cloves and some sage. Check their consistence with a wooden spoon after a couple of hours, paying attention never to stir them with any metal object in the meanwhile. Once they are ready, on the following day, stir-fry a red onion until it turns a bronze-brown colour and, after adding a good amount of olive oil, add sage, minced rosemary, red pepper and ground black pepper. Reduce the temperature with a hint of tomato and try and add quite a lot of minced “cavolo nero” (black kale).
As a final touch, add a good ham rind, which you may even obtain complimentarily from one of our grocers, together with the 3 mm slice of ham (fat and lean) that you bought from the same grocers and which you have duly cut into small strips. Stew for 15 minutes, then add the cooking water of the beans and the beans, after mashing them in a fine vegetable mill. Allow to boil for no less than ten minutes while stirring to prevent the food from sticking to the pot. Then use good quality ‘mezze maniche’ (or any other small pasta type like ‘chiocciole”) and cook them for half the cooking time. Take the pasta and beans from the stove and leave it to cool for half an hour: the mix will thicken and the consistence will then be perfect.
A generous spoonful of olive oil with some black kale will turn your pasta and beans into a powerful and unconventional exorcism. All your demons will leave your table accompanied by the laughter of your tablemates.
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