Tag Archives: pancetta

Asparagus and Pancetta Spaghetti

I’m not sure if there is an “official” Italian name for this dish – I mean one other than “Asparagus and Pancetta Spaghetti”. But, authentic Italian or no, it’s certainly a recipe that should be kept on hand when the asparagus season arrives.

The basic concept is similar to that found in the Sauté of Leeks, Endives and Radicchio with Spaghetti recipe from a week back. You have a slightly bitter ingredient (in this case the asparagus) balanced against the salty of the pancetta and the slightly savory of the Parmesan cheese. Add a little more ground pepper than usual, and “voila!” – there’s the best received dish I’ve had in quite some time.

  • 1 lb spaghetti (or other similar pasta)
  • 1/2 lb pancetta, chopped
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 3/4 lb asparagus, chopped into 1″ bits
  • 3 Tablespoons Olive Oil
  • 1 cup parmesan cheese, shredded
  • black pepper, ground

Make the spaghetti according to the directions on the package.

While waiting for your pasta water to come to a boil, fry up the pancetta over medium heat for about seven minutes. Add the garlic, and fry for another minute.

Once the pasta water gets to the boil, add the spaghetti to the water. Then, add the asparagus to the pancetta frying pan, and fry until soft, roughly 7-10 minutes.

Drain the spaghetti and place into a large glass bowl. Add the olive oil and mix into the pasta. Then add the pancetta and asparagus, as well as 1/2 cup of the parmesan cheese. Toss well.

When plating, sprinkle the spaghetti with another helping of parmesan cheese and top with ground black pepper (to taste).

Serves 4-6

Onion-Pancetta Soup

There’s something about making a soup on a rainy and chilly Saturday afternoon. With the smell of the onions permeating the house, it seems to invite people to stay at home, and allows them to look forward to dinner. In my opinion, nothing says home like the aroma of cooked onions.

This is an Italian soup, from Umbria. For those of you following along with the cookbooks at home, the use of butter and olive oil would have been the clues that could pinpoint the region.

This is also the first “onion” recipe, even though I have yet to officially announce that “onion” is the next ingredient up for discussion.

  • 6 oz. pancetta slices, chopped
  • 2 Tbsp. Olive oil
  • 1 Tbsp. Butter
  • 3 large onions, sliced (should get about 5+ cups of onions)
  • 2 teaspoons granulated sugar
  • 5 cups chicken stock
  • 28 oz can Italian plum tomatoes, chopped
  • slices of toasted bread
  • Parmesan cheese, shredded
  • Basil leaves, shredded

Place a dutch oven over medium-low heat. Add the pancetta and cook until the fat starts to turn yellow. When the fat starts to run into the pot, increase the heat to medium and add oil, butter, onions and sugar.

Cook the onions for 20-25 minutes. When the onions starts become soft and golden. Add the chicken stock and chopped tomatoes. Bring to a boil and then lower the heat to low. This should bring the soup to a simmer. Cook for 40 minutes.

When serving, place a slice of toasted bread into the bowl. Ladle the soup over top and then garnish with the Parmesan cheese and strips of basil leaves.

Serves 4 – 6

tags technorati : recipes, soup, onion soup, Italian Food