Pasta with Peas and Pancetta is one of our family favorites. Orecchiette Pasta is shaped like little “ears” and is perfect to cradle the peas and pancetta. This recipe does not use any cream. The chicken stock, pancetta fat, and olive oil give it a nice richness. I prefer to buy a whole piece of pancetta from the deli counter and cube it myself. No salt is required in this dish. The pancetta and parmesan are enough. Don’t let the pasta overcook.
Peas & Pancetta with Orecchiette Pasta
This is a versatile recipe. if you don't have pancetta you can substitute Italian sausage or regular bacon. You can also make this a vegetarian dish and leave out the pancetta.
- ½ lb cubed pancetta
- 1 TB olive oil
- 1 medium onion diced
- 5 cloves garlic chopped
- 1 ½ cups frozen peas
- red & black pepper to taste
- 1 cup chicken stock
- 1 lb orecchiette pasta
- 1 TB salt
- ½ cup grated parmesan cheese
Fry the pancetta in olive over a medium heat until crisp in a large saute pan.. Keep the fat that is rendered from the pancetta.
Add the onions and garlic and fry for 1-2 minutes.
Add the peas, peppers, and chicken stock and simmer for 10 minutes.
Boil the pasta for 9 minutes in salted water until “al dente”.
Transfer the pasta to the saute pan with a slotted spoon.
Mix well and add the parmesan cheese. Simmer for 2 more minutes.