Tonight I am essentially living the bachelor life. My wife is chaperoning a Girl Scout sleep-over with my older daughter and my younger daughter fell asleep early at the end of a busy week. Since I didn’t need to cook for anyone else, I chose to make one of my favorite springtime dinners, pasta with peas and prosciutto.
This is favorite of mine because it is fast to cook and offers a lot of flavor. I put a pot of water on to boil and got started with my toppings. I julienned a couple thin slices of prosciutto, then peeled and sliced two shallots. I had a small package of fresh peas that I had picked up at Trader Joe’s, so I was essentially ready.
For pasta, I had a one lb. package of casarecce (short lengths of pasta rolled into S shapes). Once the water was boiling, I added the pasta and started the fire under a saute pan with a splash of olive oil in it. While the pasta cooked, I sauteed the shallots and prosciutto. When the pasta had about three minutes left in its cooking time, I added the peas to the shallots and prosciutto.
After the pasta was done cooking, I drained it and scooped a serving into a large pasta bowl. By this time, the peas were done cooking so I poured the contents of the saute pan over the serving of pasta and grated a healthy handful of Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese on the top. I seasoned it with a few grinds of black pepper and called it done.
What I enjoy the most about this meal is the combination of the fresh sweetness that the peas offer juxtaposed against the saltiness of both the prosciutto and the cheese. The shallots provide a hint of onion that is tempered into an additional faint sweet flavor. Ultimately, this is a true taste of Spring to me.
Now that I have eaten dinner and done the dishes, I think it’s time for dessert. Cheers!