BOOM… Pea and Pancetta Pasta

Triple P – Pea and Pancetta Pasta

Well, I’ve just been cooking with peas and pancetta. Some of you may think you’ve heard this all before, and I’ll admit that those two ingredients are also the two main ingredients of my last recipe, but this is a great way to use up bacon and peas you may have lying around from an attempt at the last dish 🙂

This recipe uses mini-shell pasta, in particular conchigliette, which looks like this in my local Sainsbury’s (other supermarkets are available):

So, Triple P, for 4 people, in 20 minutes.

Ingredients

  • 300g pancetta, lardons or smoked bacon bits (10 rashers of chopped bacon work equally as well)
  • 150g grated parmesan cheese
  • c. 400g mini shell (conchigliette) pasta
  • A couple of knobs of butter, and some olive oil
  • 300g frozen peas
  • 3 heaped dessertspoons crème fraiche
  • 1 onion, diced
  • 7 or 8 medium mushrooms, sliced

Instructions

  1. Get a large, deep frying pan over a medium heat and add the butter and the olive oil. Add the pancetta and onions to the pan and fry for a few minutes, then add the mushrooms and keep going until everything is golden and crisp.
  2. Meanwhile, bring a large pan of water (salted, for flavour) to the boil. When the 1st stage is coming close to an end, add the conchigliette to the pan, and follow the packet instructions. It shouldn’t take more than 3 or 4 minutes, stirring regularly as those little buggers like to stick to the bottom.
  3. Add your frozen peas to the frying pan as soon as the pasta is boiling. When the pasta is done, drain it well, then add to the frying pan (hence the need for a deep pan!).
  4. Stir everything well, before adding the crème fraiche, and mix it all up until it’s nice and creamy. Then, take off the heat and stir in the grated parmesan, which should help to bind it all together, and give the dish a bit of a oomph.

If you like, you can squeeze a drop of lemon juice on the top before serving, which should add a tang. Up to you.

This is what the dish looked like just before the parmesan was added, and the final bowlful you’ve seen at the top:

So, a very simple, easy pasta dish that doesn’t cost a bomb, and that you can really add anything to. Mini-shell pasta goes really well with peas, as the peas tend to hide themselves inside the shells. It’s like a game. Almost. Not really. If you give it a try, or have any suggestions as to how this dish can be improved, then please comment below!

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