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"A gourmet who thinks of calories is like a tart who looks at her watch." - James Beard


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Saturday, May 23, 2015

Spring Pasta with Peas and Fresh Herbs


I love spring. I love the mild temperatures and green things popping up everywhere. 

If you need to spend extra time out in the garden this spring, this super-easy meal will save time in the kitchen.  It can be whipped up quickly with staples in the pantry, as long as you have some fresh herbs on hand.  



We love orrcchiette because the little ears fill up with all the ingredients making a perfect bite every time. Here, diced pancetta and peas nestle inside the pasta in a quick cheesy sauce.  This recipe comes from Food & Wine magazine.

Here's what you need for this tasty spring meal. 

1 pound orecchiette (you can also use small shells, penne or any other pasta you like)
1 tablespoon butter

1 tablespoon olive oil
4 ounces diced pancetta (you can buy this pre-diced for extra quick prep)
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 large jalapeño, seeded and diced
2 cups frozen peas, thawed
1/2 cup freshly grated Pecorino-Romano or Parmesan cheese
Freshly ground pepper
2 tablespoons chopped chives
2 tablespoons chopped flat-leaf parsley
2 tablespoons chopped mint


Cook the pasta in boiling, salted water.  Before draining, reserve a cup of the pasta water. The rest comes together in the time it takes the pasta to cook.

Heat the butter and oil over medium-high heat in a large pan and cook the pancetta for 5 minutes until crisp.  


Add the garlic and jalapeno to the pan and cook for about 30 seconds.  


Add the peas to the pan, then add the drained pasta, the pasta water and the grated cheese.  Mix it all together over low heat until a creamy sauce comes together.  Season with black pepper.


Stir in the fresh herbs.


And serve! This made four servings, enough for us for dinner and lunch the next day. It's very easy and I intend to keep these ingredients on hand for a quick easy meal any time of year. 

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