This dish is green, clean, and fresh, lifted by the fresh herbs and lemon. The cannellini beans make it more substantial while also bringing a comforting creaminess and a generous amount of protein per serving. To turn this into an autumn dish, use some grated squash and wild mushrooms instead of the asparagus and broad beans and a garnish of thyme and hazelnuts rather than basil and pine nuts.

Summer Veg and White Bean Pasta [Vegan]

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Cooking Time



For the Pasta:

  • 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil (optional)
  • 1 zucchini, cut into 1cm (1/2 inch) dice
  • 1 garlic clove, finely chopped
  • 125ml (1/2 cup) white wine
  • 1 400g (14oz) can cannellini beans, drained and rinsed
  • 200ml (3/4 cup) light vegetable stock
  • 150g (1 generous cup) asparagus, trimmed and sliced into bite-sized pieces
  • 100g (2/3 cup) podded fresh or frozen broad beans or edamame beans
  • 80g (3/4 cup) frozen peas
  • 2 spring onions, thinly sliced
  • Zest and juice of 1/2 lemon
  • 200g (2 cups) small wholemeal pasta shells
  • Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper

For the Garnish:

  • 20g (1 cup) fresh basil
  • 6 fresh mint leaves
  • 30g (1/4 cup) toasted pine nuts
  • 1 tablespoon capers


  1. Put a pan of water on to boil for the pasta.
  2. Warm the oil (if using) or a few tablespoons water in a large saucepan. Add the zucchini and cook gently over medium-low heat for 10 minutes until starting to soften.
  3. Meanwhile, roughly chop the garnish ingredients together with half the lemon zest from the main list. Set aside until needed.
  4. Add the garlic to the zucchini pan and cook for 2 more minutes before adding the wine. Let it bubble and reduce by half.
  5. Put the pasta on to cook in boiling water. At the same time, add the cannellini beans and stock to the zucchini pan. Bring to a gentle simmer, then cover and cook for 8 minutes until the beans start to collapse.
  6. Add the asparagus, broad beans, peas, and spring onions to the zucchini mixture. Cook for 5 minutes until everything is tender. Taste and tweak the seasoning with salt, pepper, and a dash or 2 of lemon juice, if needed. If it seems too thick, add a dash of the pasta cooking water too.
  7. Drain the pasta, tip it into the veg pan and stir together.
  8. Divide it between 2 bowls and garnish with the chopped herb mixture.

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