A handful of chopped wild fennel, thrown in at the end, adds a bright, herbaceous note and Pequin Chile Oil lends complexity of flavor and a super spicy kick. If you’re tempted to use canned beans for this recipe, think again. This dish is all about the savory, satisfying bean broth, the marriage of the starches from the beans and the pasta, and the harmony of their textures.
In a small saucepan, heat 1⁄2 cup of olive oil over medium-low heat until hot to the touch, about 3 to 4 minutes. Remove pot from the heat. Stir in 2 tablespoons of pequin chile flakes or other hot red pepper flakes and let them steep for at least 30 minutes. Cool the chile oil, and then transfer it to a covered container. Stir well before using to ensure chile flakes are suspended in each spoonful of oil. You can store the oil, refrigerated, for up to 1 month.