You will be impressed by not only the flavor of pancetta pasta with peas but how simple it is to make. You can whip this tasty dish out with 10 minutes of prep and 20 minutes of cook time. When you have hectic days you may not feel like cooking a lavish meal. This is the best of both worlds. Easy and scrumptious! Plus, even your kids will enjoy this dinner idea.
What Is Pancetta?
Pancetta is a flavorful piece of pork belly that has been cured in salt. It tastes amazing and is well-known in Italian dishes all over the world. You will hear people use the phrase pancetta bacon or Italian bacon and that is what we will be using for this recipe. If you see the word bacon, then you know we are talking about pancetta.
How To Make Pancetta Pasta
This pancetta pasta isn’t a meal that you will need to stress over. It’s fancy enough for a dinner party too! Okay, let’s get started.
First Step: Boil water and add a little bit of salt and olive oil. Then cook pasta using the directions on the package.
Second Step: Reserve one cup of water then drain the rest after the pasta is finished cooking.
Third Step: Cook the bacon until it’s browned then set on a paper-towel-lined plate so grease can drain off. Save 2 tablespoons of bacon grease.
Fourth Step: Use the reserved bacon grease plus olive oil and heat up in a skillet. Then add in the peas, salt, pepper, shallots, and red pepper flakes stirring often for about 5 minutes.
Fifth Step: Toss in garlic and parsley and cook until peas are cooked all the way through.
Sixth Step: Add back in bacon, cooked pasta, and reserved pasta water. Toss in lemon juice, red pepper flakes, and lemon zest.
Seventh Step: Top with grated cheese, salt, and pepper.
That’s all you have to do to make this tasty pancetta pasta with peas! It’s one of the best main course meals ever!
Pancetta Pasta Variations
I love recipes that you can toss in an extra ingredient here and there. You don’t have to follow it exactly if you don’t want to. Try some of these variations to change up the flavors from time to time.
- Mushrooms – That earthy and delicious flavor of mushrooms enhances any dish, but especially this pancetta pasta with peas.
- Italian Hot Chili Peppers – If you love a little bit of heat in your food add some in! You will enjoy the flavor they provide with the pasta.
- Lemon Juice – Before serving give the pasta a squeeze of fresh lemon juice for a tangy zip. Yum!
How Do You Store Pancetta Pasta?
Allow the Italian bacon pasta to cool completely then add it to an airtight storage container. It will last 3-4 days in the regfrigerator.
You can reheat the pea pasta a couple of ways. First, you could add a little bit of olive oil to a skillet then stir until it’s hot.
Another option is to place the pasta and peas on a microwave-safe plate and heat up for a minute or two. It’s best if you cover it with a damp paper towel to keep it moist.
How Do You Know If Pasta Is Old
As you keep leftover pasta in the refrigerator you should be looking for signs that it’s started to spoil. Many times pasta will become really watery and break down. This is a good indicator that it’s no longer good.
It may also appear to be dried out or have mold. Both give you a huge clue that it’s not safe to eat. Also, if you take of the lid and notice a strong odor then it’s not going to be very appetizing anyway.
These tools and supplies just make your life so much eaiser when trying to cook. You can use what you have on hand or make the switch.
Looking for more delicious dinner ideas? These reader favorites are just what you need:
- Chicken Meatballs And Cauliflower Rice
- Chicken Satay And Cucumber Salad
- Easy Chuck Steak And Roasted Veggies
- Panko Crusted Pork Street Tacos
Pancetta Pasta With Peas
- Stock Pot
- Large Cast Iron Skillet
- Measuring Cups
- 3/4 lb. Spaghetti
- Olive Oil
- 1 Shallot (thinly sliced)
- 2 cups Frozen Peas (thawed)
- 8 cloves Garlic (minced)
- 2 tsp Crushed Red Pepper (divided)
- 1 bunch parsley (chopped)
- Salt (to taste)
- Black Pepper (to taste)
- Parmesan Cheese (grated)
- Line a large plate with paper towels.
- Add both salt and a slight amount of olive oil to the pot of water.
- Bring the water to a boil.
- Cook the pasta following the package instructions.
- Before draining the water from the pot scoop out about 1 cup of the water. Set it aside for later.
- Drain the water from the pasta.
- Heat the skillet over medium-high heat. Carefully add the bacon pieces and fry until fully cooked and are brown. Toss the bacon pieces often. Take the bacon pieces out of the skillet placing it on the lined plate. Take out about 2 teaspoons of the bacon grease before disposing of it. Set aside the 2 teaspoons of bacon fat to use later.
- Replace the skillet on the stovetop set on medium heat. Add the bacon grease and about 4 tablespoons of the olive oil. Heat the skillet with the oil and bacon fat until it has a shimmer but not smoking.
- Slowly add the shallots, peas, salt, pepper, and 1 teaspoon of the crushed red pepper. Increase the stovetop heat to a medium-high, cooking for about 5 minutes. Toss often. Add garlic and parsley, cooking for another 3 minutes.
- Return the bacon pieces to the skillet. Add the cooked pasta and 3/4 cup of the pasta water. Add in the rest of the crushed red pepper, lemon zest, and juice. Toss to combine.
- Add the grated cheese to the pasta. Start out with 3-4 tablespoons. Add more if you desire. Taste test for salt and pepper.