For the Sauce:
1 quart chicken or vegetable stock
2 cups water
2 tablespoons EVOO – Extra Virgin Olive Oil
2 tablespoons butter
1 pound mezze penne or penne pasta
Salt and pepper
1 carrot, diced
2 ribs celery with leafy tops, chopped
1 onion, chopped
1 small bulb fennel, chopped
4 large cloves garlic, chopped or sliced
8 to 10 leaves sage, thinly sliced
2 tablespoons fresh rosemary
1 tablespoon fresh thyme, stripped
1 bay leaf
2 tablespoons tomato paste
1 cup white wine
1 can cannellini or Roman beans (preferred brand Goya), drained
1 cup Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese, plus additional to pass at the table
Heat stock and water in a medium-size pot over moderate heat.
In a large, deep skillet, heat EVOO, 2 turns of the pan, over medium-high heat. Melt butter into the oil; when it foams, add the pasta and stir. Once golden, add vegetables, garlic and herbs. Stir 2-3 minutes to soften then add tomato paste, stir to incorporate then add wine. Stir until wine is absorbed then add 2 cups of the warm stock and water. Stir gently until absorbed. Continuing adding the warm stock and water in stages until pasta is almost al dente and starchy/creamy. Add the white beans, let them heat through a minute then stir in cheese.
Serve in shallow bowls, drizzled with more EVOO and pass more cheese at the table.