Cavatappi with prosciutto, peas and parm

Posted on March 21, 2012

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The other night I decided, after I had already started to defrost some shrimp, that I had better use the prosciutto in the fridge before it got dry and icky. I had bought about 1/4 of a pound, because it was on sale this week. I ended up using the shrimp for some bruschetta, but it wasn’t really very good – not worth getting into.

I decided to cook the very simplest version I know of – that my mum used to use with peas, and other veggies when we were little. I also didn’t want to go food shopping again, so I was planning to cook straight out of the pantry until I could no longer make a meal out of anything. This is the best option for those of whom do not like cream sauce, but still like cheesy pasta with the saltiness of prosciutto. Neither my boyfriend or I like cream sauce at all. I’m lactose intolerant, so it’s basically off limits for me unless I want to invest some time into a massive stomach ache for the night…

This took me about… 30 minutes to make – includes the amount of time you need to pull all shelves apart in pantry and rip fridge apart to find things.

Cavatappi with Prosciutto, Peas and Parm

  • 3 tblspns olive oil
  • 3 tablespoons butter
  • 1/4 (next time I’d go for 1/2 lb) thinly sliced (at deli) prosciutto, cut widthwise into 1/2″ pieces
  • small onion or shallot, diced
  • clove of garlic, diced (optional)
  • 1/2 c white wine or chicken broth (or a mixture of the two!)
  • 2 cups of frozen or fresh peas
  • 1 lb of pasta

In a large pot, salt enough water for 1 lb of pasta: bring to boil. Cook 1 pound of cavatappi for about 5-7 minutes, tender, or super al dente? Reserve cooking water for later!

In a large skillet (preferably one with higher sides, which I don’t currently own) use 1-1 1/2 tbspns olive oil, chop up prosciutto into about 1/2″ slices, or smaller, if you like, cook until it just starts to crisp, take out and set aside.

Put 2 tblspns olive oil and 3 tbl spns of butter in the same pan, chop up a shallot or small onion (I only had a small onion) and a clove of garlic, if you like, I forgot to add this when I made it, and I wish I had taken the time to think, instead of try to get it done quickly.

Cook until onion or shallot is tender. Add either 1/2 c of white (dry) wine, or chicken broth, or if you are running low on drinking wine, do half and half.

Add 2 cups of frozen or fresh peas. Cook until bright green, add pasta, keep cooking – stirring frequently – add roughly a cup of grated (fresh grated is my favorite!) parmesan cheese – if it gets dry, add the cooking water from the pasta. Mix until pasta and peas are fully coated.

At this point, I’d taste it and add salt/pepper to taste.

Put in serving dish, or just sprinkle prosciutto on top and enjoy.

PS. It’s also good the next day for a lunch that doesn’t necessarily need to be warmed up in order to be good to eat!

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