Pasta and Peas

Once again, the Herald Food page ( will help celebrate National Pasta Month and Pasta Lovers’ Week in October. We will be featuring the "Use Your Noodle" pasta puzzle crossword as well as publishing several pasta recipes, in conjunction with the North Dakota Wheat Commission.

One of the highlights of the contest (this year’s theme is "Premium Pasta from the Prairie") is the package of gifts 10 winners of the contest will receive. Included is a T-shirt and a couple of boxes of pasta from three North Dakota producers.

In anticipation of the contest, here is recipe that features angel hair pasta that is served with a bacon cream sauce and peas — a tasty combination. With our cool summer, many people have planted a second crop of peas, which soon will be ready. I even think Farmers Market vendors still have been selling peas. If not, frozen peas will do.

Angel Hair Pasta with Bacon Sauce and Peas
6 strips raw bacon
½ pound dry angel hair pasta
2 tablespoons olive oil or more as needed
¼ cup minced onions or shallots
1 clove garlic, peeled, minced
½ cup fresh or frozen peas (thawed and rinsed)
1 cup heavy whipping cream
2 tablespoons grated Parmesan cheese
Freshly ground black pepper
Cut the bacon into 1/8-inch pieces. In a large skillet over medium heat, cook the bacon pieces until crispy. Remove the bacon and set aside on a paper towel.
Drain all but 2 tablespoons of the bacon fat from the skillet.
Cook the pasta according to package directions, less 1 minute. Drain the pasta and toss with 2 tablespoons of olive oil.
Heat the remaining bacon fat until shimmering. Add the onions and cook over medium heat until soft. Add the garlic and peas and cook for 1 minute longer. Add the bacon and cream and cook until simmering. Add the cooked pasta, stir to combine and cook 1 minute more. Top with Parmesan cheese and freshly ground black pepper before serving.
Yield: Serves. 4.
Approximate nutritional analysis per serving: 606 calories (61 percent from fat), 41 grams fat (19 grams saturated), 47 grams carbohydrates, 14 grams protein, 305 milligrams sodium, 100 milligrams cholesterol, 87 milligrams calcium, 3 grams fiber.