Farfalle with Pancetta Saffron Cream Sauce

Written by CMP on July 22, 2008

Farfalle with Pancetta Saffron Cream Sauce

Like the orecchiette I made a couple weeks ago, this recipe is inspired by a favorite restaurant dish. But this time, it's my wife's favorite and I figured I'd earn some points by leaning how to make it.


  • 1 Lb Farfalle Pasta
  • 1/4 Cup Extra Virgin Olive Oil
  • 1/3 Lb Pancetta, about 1/8" slice and then rough cut
  • 2 Large Cloves of Garlic, sliced thin
  • 1/2 Cup Low Salt Chicken Broth
  • 1/2 Cup Half and Half
  • 1 Tsp Saffron Strands
  • 1 Package Frozen Peas
  • 1/4 Grated Romano Cheese
  • 6-8 Fresh Sage Leaves, chopped
  • 1/2 Tsp Fresh Ground Black Pepper

Set a large pot of salted water over high heat on your stove.

As you're waiting for the water to boil, heat a large sauce pan over medium-high heat and add the olive oil. Add pancetta to the pan and cook until crispy, about 8-9 minutes. Remove pancetta from the pan and set aside (don't lose it, you'll be adding it back in later). Add garlic to the pan and cook until it just begins to brown (45 seconds or so).

By now, your water should be boiling. Add pasta and cook to just before al dente (about 10-11 minutes). You'll be finishing the pasta in the pan with the sauce.

Add chicken broth, half and half, and saffron to the pan and whisk to combine. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat to low and simmer, whisking frequently.

When the pasta is done, dump the frozen peas into the water with the pasta, then drain the whole lot in a colander. Add pasta and peas, along with the grated cheese, to the sauce pan and mix well. Raise the heat to medium-low and continue cooking for another 2-3 minutes. The pasta will absorb much of the sauce, so don't be alarmed when it seems to have dissappeared.

Mix in sage and pepper just before serving.

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