Put the bacon in a large pot or Dutch oven over medium heat and cook, stirring occasionally, until crisp, about 4 minutes. Add the onion and cook, stirring occasionally, until slightly softened, about 3 minutes. Add the carrots, garlic, tomato paste, thyme and 1/2 teaspoon each salt and pepper and cook until the carrots begin to soften, about 2 minutes.
Add the chicken broth, 6 cups water and the parmesan rind. Increase the heat to high; cover and bring to a boil. Add the pasta and beans and cook, uncovered, 5 minutes. Reduce the heat to medium and add the kale. Simmer, uncovered, until slightly thickened, about 7 minutes. Remove the parmesan rind, stir in half of the grated cheese and season with salt and pepper. Ladle into bowls and top with the remaining cheese.
Per Serving: Calories: 499; Total Fat: 16 grams; Saturated Fat: 6 grams; Protein: 23 grams; Total carbohydrates: 66 grams; Sugar: grams; Fiber: 9 grams; Cholesterol: 44 milligrams; Sodium: 763 milligrams
Photograph by Christopher Testani
Recipe courtesy Food Network Magazine