This pasta is perfect for a cold night: creamy and comforting. Best of all, it is super easy to make. Really, I’m just punching up the flavor of jarred alfredo sauce. The four main things you need are sauce, pancetta, mushrooms and peas. If you have onions and garlic at home already, great! Throw them in too. If not, it will still be fantastic!
I even buy the pancetta already chopped so that cuts down on prep time. If you buy sliced mushrooms you really are just throwing things in a pot and stirring. So simple!
This is a very easy recipe to double or triple without adding more prep time.
Creamy Italian Pasta
½ lb Farfalle Pasta (Bow Tie) (1/2 a box)
4 oz Pancetta, diced
½ small Onion, diced (optional)
½ lb Mushrooms, sliced or quartered
1 clove garlic, minced (optional)
15 oz jar Alfredo Sauce
¼ c Milk
½ c Frozen Peas (at least)
Boil a large pot of water, add salt and then cook pasta. Cook about 2 minutes less than whatever “al dente” is listed on the package.
Meanwhile, put pancetta in cold, large pot (large enough to mix sauce and pasta together at the end).
Turn the heat to medium or medium high and cook, stirring often until crispy.
Remove pancetta with a slotted spoon but leave fat in the pan; set pancetta aside.
If using, add onion to pot, sprinkle with salt and pepper, sauté until translucent.
Add mushrooms, sprinkle with salt & pepper, and sauté; stirring often for about 5 minutes (they should absorb the fat in the pan and then release it again).
If using, add garlic to pot and cook for 1 minute while stirring constantly.
Add jarred sauce to pot, stir to combine.
Pour milk into empty sauce jar, put on lid and shake (this will get all the sauce out of the jar).
Add milk to pot; stir everything together.
Add peas to pot and let heat through for a minute.
Add pancetta back in and stir.
Use a spider to transfer the pasta from the pot of boiling water to the pot of sauce (or if you don’t have a spider, reserve 1 cup of pasta water then drain pasta and add to sauce).
Toss everything together to combine.
If the sauce seems too thick you can add some pasta water.
Serve hot and garnish with some fresh parsley or chives.