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Creamy Pasta with Peas and Bacon

September 7, 2010

Hi there! Autumn is upon us in the Midwest; makes me want to curl up with a side of bacon. Why? Perhaps it’s a primitive instinct to “fatten up” for the winter? Who knows, but I am craving me some bacon! This pasta dish has just enough bacon to satisfy, but not blow the diet.  Bonus for me: Amelia and Guy both love it. You may make this dish less heavy with 2% milk which works lovely. Originally inspired by a Gordon Ramsay recipe.
I love how frugal and forgiving this dish is; it’s truly hard to mess up. (Just please do not over cook your pasta! Al Dente my dear.)

Sorry no pics at this time 😦 Camera kaput! I will add pics the next time we make it.
All measurements are approximate

  • 2-4 slices of bacon (We like the nitrate free “Sunday Morning Bacon” from Whole Foods)
  • 1 med sized Onion (yellow or white)
  • 2 cloves of fresh garlic (you may also use powdered)
  • 1 tsp all-purpose flour
  • 2 oz of grated or shredded Parmesan cheese (or use whatever you may have on hand)
  • 1/2 -3/4 cup milk, cream, soymilk (again whatever you have. Higher fat milk or cream will give you a more creamy finish)
  • 1/2 cup reserved pasta water (when the pasta is about done scoop out a mug of the starchy cooking water.)
  • 1/2-3/4 c frozen peas (or whatever veggie you like. Use common sense: pre-cook carrots, root veggies and the like before adding.)
  • Salt, pepper, red pepper flakes to taste
  • 1/2 lb shells, spirals. Again whatever you have works! (We like whole wheat pasta just remember it takes about 4 min longer to cook)


  • Boil water for pasta and start cooking pasta per directions on box (minus about 2 min)
  • Cook bacon until crisp and renders fat. Remove from pan.
  • Dice onion and caramelize in the bacon fat.
  • Add flour and make a roux of sorts with the bacon fat, onions, and part of the milk.
  • Right before the pasta is done add in the garlic (garlic burns easily and is very bitter when over cooked.)
  • Reserve your pasta liquid (you may not need this) and drain pasta (don’t rinse)
  • Add pasta to the skillet, toss and add the remainder of milk. Reduce down for about 2 min add the cheese and cook until thick and creamy
  • If it doesn’t thicken add a touch of the pasta water and stir. The starch in the water may help to thicken your sauce. Or if too thick, add more milk and a touch of pasta water to thin out.
  • Add peas about right before serving to heat through.****Top with more shredded Parmesan cheese and fresh cracked pepper.


2 Comments leave one →
  1. September 9, 2010 2:05 pm

    Ooh. This sounds so yummy. I have everything I need to make it except for the peas (and I don’t like peas …). Do I lose points for that?

    Love your blog, sister in crunchiness!

    • September 11, 2010 12:23 am

      My Mantra: use what you have. I am not a HUGE pea fan myself either. My little on the other hand ADORES them! Thanks for visiting! Spread the crunch!

      Kristina Mattson

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