27 June 2009

Pancetta, garlic...

With about five more pounds of pancetta hanging in the fruit cellar, lots of our recent meals include it. Early summer is filled with after dinner activities, so easily prepared meals are essential if we want to sit down together. Rice and pasta are the staples of these dinners.
Two nights ago it was pancetta, garlic, olive oil, fresh parsely and thyme, with a generous grating of Parmesan cheese over linguine noodles. Last night it was this: butter, pancetta, and shallots. Then generous pours of a mediocre Alsatian riesling, which I bubbled down. A quick paw through the icebox and a nice hunk of fresh ginger emerged. Thin slices of that, along with fresh thyme and parsley. Finally, peas, although they came from a bag, not the garden. Mix in penne noodles, and we’re good to go.
We keep trying new ways to eat pancetta, and they’re usually pretty good. I try to cook it long enough for its fat to flavor whatever else it's cooking with, but not so long that it loses its unique flavor.

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