This might just be the perfect late-spring dish along side anything that you cook on the grill. Mind you, I eat bacon very rarely, but here, its smoky flavor against the sweet peas is perfect and so satisfying. (Salty-sweet for the win every time.) The other sweet flavor that is at the same time savory, comes from shallots- my favorite of the alliums. Add cream and perhaps the cutest pasta shape, ditalini, (little thimbles) and this salad gets loved by everyone. especially children.
"If you can't find ditalini pasta, tiny shells or elbows work great too."
Notes: Bacon is uncured.
CREAMY BACON & PEAS PASTA SALAD
Ingredients: 12 oz. ditalini pasta (or other small pasta), 3/4 cup frozen petite peas-thawed, 3-4 pieces of bacon-chopped, 2 shallots-chopped, 1 cup half & half, 1/2 cup finely grated Parmesan cheese, pinch of salt, cracked pepper to taste
1. Cook pasta to al dente, drain and rinse in cold water. Set aside.
2. Cook the chopped bacon over medium heat for five minutes. Add in the shallots and cook with the bacon until soft.
3. Pour in the half & half and peas then stir in half of the parm. Bring to a simmer and continue to cook until thickened slightly. Add salt and pepper, taste for seasoning.
4. Pour the creamy peas into the pasta and toss. Sprinkle over the rest of the Parmesan cheese, and toss again.