Orecchiette, Peas, and Onions are a marriage made in heaven. Fresh English peas paired with a flavorful onion is simply amazing. With this in mind, let’s add pancetta, and a fun pasta, orecchiette. Unsurprisingly, the name literally means “little ears” when you see this pasta it makes complete sense. What we will find is a simple amazing plate. Served as a primi, or starter, or as a simple main, it’s a plate to please all.
Due to the utter simplicity, this dish I have found fresh peas are the best. In a pinch though, I have used frozen and it will still be nice. In my pasta making trials, I have endeavored to make orecchiette before, but without great effect. Currently, I purchase a well-made organic one, if you know the secret I’m ready to learn.
Orecchiette with Peas and Onions
In my house, whenever we don’t know what to make for dinner, we opt for a pasta dish. We keep a pretty well-stocked pantry, so this is often the simplest thing. Making the same pasta dish all the time though can become pretty boring, so we like to try different varieties.
- 6 oz (170g) fresh English peas (frozen in a pinch)
- ½ white onion diced
- 4 oz (115g) pancetta cubed
- 8 oz (226g) Orecchiette
Bring a large stockpot of salty water to boil
In a large sauté pan over medium heat add a small amount of olive oil, brown pancetta when about done add onion and cook until translucent, taking care not to brown the onion
Add the orecchiette to the water cook as directed
Add peas into the sauté and a ¼ glass of water (just enough to barely cover the peas)
Allow the water to cook off the mixture
Using a steel spider strainer or slotted spoon, scoop the slightly undercooked pasta directly from the water to the sauté pan, add a ladle full of water, and stir
Add 3-4 good grinds of black pepper
Allow the water to evaporate cooking the orecchiette, and melding the flavors this will create a basic sauce as well, if you need more time to cook the pasta, just add a bit more water
Adjust the seasoning and serve in a bowl
Top with a drizzle of olive oil and some fresh chopped parsley