Monday, June 6, 2011

Rigatoni with Fave and Pancetta

One of my favorite Food Outlet purchases are the pancetta and prosciutto "ends" that are left over after slices have been cut and packaged. The manufacturer then packages the leftovers that Grocery Outlet manages to buy. I've never seen them in another store, except for better manicured ends sold at Corti Brothers in Sacramento. I use these for anything that needs a courser dice of these products. I know "fave" is not generally known as the plural for fava, but it is and I just can't say favas after one year of Italian.

1 lb.rigatoni
1/3C diced pancetta
1 1/2 lbs fave in pods
2 cloves minced garlic
1T olive oil
Freshly grated Romano cheese

Boil the pasta water. After shelling the fave, add 1T of olive oil to a pan large enough to hold the pasta and beans after they are both cooked. Saute over a medium heat for  a few minutes, then add water and cover so the fave will steam.

While you check on the beans and stir occassionally until the water is gone, thick dice the pancetta by first cuttting thick slices from the end. Look at that thing. All that pancetta for only $3, a bargain hunter's dream! Start cooking the pasta.

Add the pancetta to the pan and saute along with the beans until the fat starts melting. The rendering fat should be enough to keep them from sticking to the pan. 

When the skins start peeling or splitting the beans are almost completely cooked. The fat should look translucent. I always eat the skins and like the taste, so don't bother skinning the fave. This is a rustic dish and they are part of it.

Add the minced garlic and saute for a minute until they are no longer raw. Set aside if the pasta isn't finished boiling. Drain the pasta, add to the pan, and continue stirring over a medium heat until the water is absorbed. Add cheese, plate, then sprinkle on more cheese. 

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