Sunday, February 10, 2008

Peas with Pancetta

Sometimes there's just no other vegetable (carb) except peas that will work. I really enjoy green peas, especially the young, small ones. But because they're a carb, we don't eat them much anymore except adding them onto a salad at a salad bar. This dish, though, makes me a convert every time I've prepared it. Probably it's the pancetta. I'm sure glad I was introduced to pancetta some years ago (it's Italian bacon, but not smoked as American bacon is). Trader Joe's carries it in paper-thin slices and in cube form. I keep one of those boxes of pancetta cubes in the freezer all the time now, and it's perfect for this dish.

The recipe came from Cooking Light, April, 2005. So that means it's low in fat and calories. But this recipe is high on flavor, I'll tell you.

Peas with Pancetta
Recipe: Cooking Light
Servings: 6
2 ounces pancetta -- chopped
2 teaspoons olive oil
3/4 cup white onion -- diced
1 whole garlic clove -- minced
3 cups frozen peas -- petite
1/2 cup chicken broth
1 teaspoon sugar
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 cup Italian parsley -- minced
1. In a large nonstick skillet over medium high heat cook the pancetta until it is crispy but not brown. Remove to a small bowl and set aside. Add the diced onions to the drippings in the pan and sauté for about 5 minutes, then add the garlic. Continue to cook for about another minute. Do not let the garlic brown. Add the peas, chicken broth, sugar and salt. Simmer for about 5 minutes (or less) until the peas are just tender, stirring occasionally.
2. Stir in the pancetta and chopped parsley and turn out into a heated bowl and serve.
Serving Ideas : Serve in a light colored bowl - the dish looks very pretty with the green and red-brown of the pancetta. If serving with lamb, add some fresh mint to the top. Would make a very nice holiday dinner vegetable, especially with lamb, pork or turkey.
Per Serving: 102 Calories; 3g Fat (23.5% calories from fat); 7g Protein; 13g Carbohydrate; 4g Dietary Fiber; 7mg Cholesterol; 490mg Sodium. Exchanges: 1/2 Grain(Starch); 1/2 Lean Meat; 1/2 Vegetable; 1/2 Fat; 0 Other Carbohydrates.

Printer-friendly recipe, click title at top.

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