Family Favorites...Skillet Pasta Fagioli

  Southern Living Quick and Easy had this recipe for Skillet Pasta Fagioli which I decided to try. Really it is a glorified casserole, but done in one pan. I had to look up what Fagioli was, Pasta with beans. 
  This is somewhat different in that it is not a soup as several recipes I saw were, and that it has buttermilk and chili powder in it. Seems like a strange combination with the oregano and thyme, but it works. Some grated Parmesan cheese was good with it.
  I made the full recipe and it was enough for five of us with some left for lunches. 
  If the picture looks familiar, it is because I used it for a post about the biscuits. I plated everything up as that is the easiest when you are feeding 5 people in a small kitchen. Hence, no separate picture of the casserole or biscuits. Don’t let the list of ingredients scare you, it is quick to put together, remember one pan!
Skillet-Style Pasta Fagioli
1 pound of pork sausage or ground beef
1 medium onion, diced
1 clove garlic, crushed
1 16 ounce can of tomatoes*
1 cup buttermilk
1 cup of uncooked elbow macaroni
1 (16 ounce) can of kidney beans
1 ½ teaspoon sugar
1 ½ teaspoon chili powder
1 teaspoon salt
¼ teaspoon crushed red pepper
1 teaspoon fennel seeds (optional)
½ teaspoon each dried oregano and thyme
  Brown meat, onion, garlic, in large skillet; drain of any grease. Add remaining ingredients; stir. Cover; place on high heat until steaming. Reduce heat to low and simmer 25 minutes or until macaroni is cooked. 
Yield 6 to 8 servings
* Canned tomatoes and canned kidney beans are now in smaller size cans. I added an ounce and a half of water to make up for the smaller amount of tomatoes, and just used the size of kidney beans that I had. They are now 15 ounces. You have to add the extra ounce of water so there is enough liquid for the macaroni.

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