Tuesday, May 1, 2012

Bacon, Peas, and Ricotta Cheese Pasta

I am a bit behind, but the next few posts should bring me up to date.

With the Week 1 CSA peas, I made this beautiful dish. I wish I could take credit for this recipe, but it is my Step-Mom's creation. It is delicious and children love it.

Here are the ingredients:
1 box Farfalle (bow tie pasta)
1 package bacon
1 package ricotta cheese
peas (I used fresh peas, frozen peas work fine)

First, put the whole container of ricotta in the bowl you intend to serve the dish in while you cook the rest of the meal so it can get to room temperature.

Then, put on the water for the pasta and cook the pasta according to the directions on the box.

Meanwhile, cut the bacon into 1/4 to 1/2 inch pieces. It is easiest to do this when the bacon is mostly frozen or very cold...it is less slippery that way:

Then cook the bacon in a non-stick pan. You do not want to fry this bacon in its own grease, so keep the temperature at medium or a little lower. You just want to get it nice and brown, but not crispy. If it is really cracklin and poppin, turn the temperature down. Cook it so it is 3/4 of the way done:

DO NOT DRAIN THE BACON!! Next add the peas:

Turn the temperature down to simmer and cover the pan. Occasionally stir around the peas and bacon until the peas are cooked through (about 10 minutes).

When the pasta is finished cooking, add to the ricotta and stir well. The heat of the pasta will finish melting the ricotta:

Finally, toss in the peas, bacon, and bacon grease to the pasta and ricotta:

Delicious weeknight meal. My child loved it as well.

To finish up week 1 of the CSA, I made Pork Chops with roasted sweet potatoes and collards. I am funny about collards, I do not like to cook the heck out of them. I think they get bitter and do not care for them that way. I also do not like to add much to them. I simply cut the stems off and cut them into one inch strips like so:

Then I put them in salted boiling water for 10-15 minutes. When I drain the water, I add salt and oil (grape seed or olive). Here is the complete meal:

The sweet potatoes I already had on hand. I just chopped them, added salt and olive oil and roasted them for 30 minutes at 350.

That wraps up CSA week one!

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