Parker Lee’s first, great love is cured pig or, “shooto” (or, if she minded her Italian food spelling, “sciutto”). The point is, it’s all some form of prosciutto to her and she adores it like most kids live and die for chocolate ice-cream. If we can work shooto into a dish we’re golden. She’ll devour it.
Our homage to pig & pasta is close to what a roman trattoria would call pasta alla gricia, essentially, an eggless pasta carbonara. It’s a dish that sings– or totally sinks– based on how well you cook your bacon. (Click here for Jamie’s bacon cooking tutorial.) The rendered bacon fat serves as your only sauce and it needs to taste smoky, not burned. From there, it’s easy peasy cooking and the final tot pasta… is worthy of a nice Malbec for Mom & Dad.
- 3 slices bacon, chopped
- 1 small onion, finely chopped (about 1 cup)
- 2 cloves Garlic, minced
- 1.5 cups peas, blanched*
- 8 oz rigatoni pasta
- ¼ cup grated parmesan or pecorino cheese, plus more as needed
- Place the chopped bacon in a large pot or saute pan and cover with 1 cup of water. Turn the heat to medium and cook, stirring occasionally until the water is evaporated and the bacon begins to sizzle and brown, 8-10 minutes.
- Add the onions and garlic to the browned bacon and cook until tender, about 6 minutes more.
- While the bacon and onions cook, place a separate pot on the stove and fill with salted water (this could be the same water you use to blanch the peas). When the water reaches a rapid boil, add the pasta and stir immediately. Cook the pasta at a low until nearly tender, about 10 minutes, stirring occasionally so it does not stick.
- When the pasta is tender, scoop it from the boiling water and add to the bacon/onion mixture along with 1 cup of the cooking water. Bring the pot to a boil and cook 2 minutes more.
- Add the peas and cheese to the pot, stir well and remove from the heat. Serve in bowls and top with additional cheese.