Peas and penne pasta go well together. There’s nothing like the ‘pop’ of a pea when you bite into it. Throw it in with some other great things, like cream and bacon, and you’ve got a great side! I like to use a good, thick, smoky bacon to add a little more flavor contrast. Fried pancetta would be great too. It would add a nice crunch, but without the smokiness. Either way it’s still great!
I often substitute this penne with peas dish for pasta salad. It’s almost like a pasta salad, but a lot more decadent.
I highly recommend that you shred or grate your own cheese at home. Don’t buy the pre-shredded or pre-grated stuff. It has stuff added to it to keep it from sticking together. That ‘stuff’ affects how the cheese melts. Shred it yourself and use the good stuff.
Also try my Parmesan peas.
Penne with Peas
- Cook pasta per package instructions. Drain, but keep 1 cup of the boiling liquid just in case you need it later on.
- Cut bacon into small pieces. Add to a large skillet over medium high heat and cook for about 3 minutes.
- Add the onion and cook until softened and the bacon begins to crisp.
- Add the butter, peas and 2 tablespoons of water, and cook until the peas are tender, 2-5 minutes.
- Stir in the cream and season with salt and pepper.
- Add the cheese, a little at a time, stirring to combine, until melted.
- Add the pasta and stir to coat.
- If the mixture is too thick and a LITTLE bit of the reserved pasta water and stir. Add more liquid if required.
Nutritional values are approximate.