You can add other veggies, such as asparagus, peppers or broccoli. Sun-dried tomatoes can be used instead of fresh ones. Add a couple of chopped anchovies for a bit of zing!


  • 200g penne pasta, preferably buckwheat or wholewheat pasta

  • 3 tbsp olive oil

  • 1 large onion, sliced

  • 1 garlic clove, crushed or grated

  • 2 large tomatoes, quartered

  • 800g/4 cups of tinned beans, drained and rinsed (such as cannellini, haricot, chickpeas and pinto beans)

  • 2 generous handfuls of chopped fresh herbs (basil, coriander, chives, parsley, rocket)

  • Juice of 1 lemon


  • 1.

    Cook the pasta until just cooked or 'al dente', drain and refresh under cold water. Set aside.

  • 2.

    Heat 1 tbsp olive oil in a large pan, add the onion and fry for a minute.

  • 3.

    Add the garlic, tomatoes and the rest of the oil, stirring for about 30 seconds. Add the beans and cook for another five minutes. Stir in the pasta and the other herbs. Squeeze over the

  • 4.

    Lemon juice.

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