Peas & Pancetta
Sweet peas have arrived at the farmers market, spring is here! Peas & pancetta - one of my favorite dishes that I only eat in Spring when the peas are bright & fresh. I can't get enough, I don't know if it's the peas or the pancetta - is it the green veggie or the fatty pork that I love so?! Maybe I should just have another spoonful...
vegetarian option: omit pancetta
- 12 ounces fresh shelled sweet peas, rinsed
- 4 ounces pancetta, bacon or guanciale, cured pig’s cheek (omit if vegetarian)
- 1 small onion, sliced
- 1-2 cloves garlic
- 2-3 cherry tomatoes, halved
- 1 tablespoon red wine vinegar
- small bunch parsley, chopped
- salt & pepper
- extra virgin olive oil
Bring a medium pot up to boil. In the meantime, in a medium skillet on medium-low heat, slowly render down the pancetta for 4-5 minutes, trying not to brown it and not crispy. If it starts to brown remove the pan from the heat or lower the flame.
Next add garlic & onion, sauté for 5-6 minutes.
(Vegetarian Note: Just omit the the pancetta & sauté the onions & garlic in olive oil.)
When the onions & garlic are about 2 minutes from being ready, add the tomatoes.
At the same time toss the peas in the water and blanch for 2-3 minutes. You want them approximately half-cooked. Strain the peas and throw them directly into the pan with the pancetta adding a spoonful of the pea-water. Allow to cook until peas are cooked but still have a bite.
Taste and adjust the seasoning with salt & pepper.
Just before you serve, toss in the herbs and drizzle with good extra virgin olive oil.