Mini shell pasta with a creamy smoked bacon & pea sauce

mini shell pasta with a creamy smoked bacon & pea sauce

Serves 4-6

  • 6 slices higher-welfare smoked streaky bacon or pancetta

  • 1 small bunch fresh mint

  • 100 g Parmesan cheese

  • sea salt

  • freshly ground black pepper

  • 1 organic chicken stock cube, optional

  • 400 g dried mini shell pasta

  • olive oil

  • 300 g frozen peas

  • 2 heaped dessertspoons half-fat crème fraîche

  • 1 lemon

Finely slice the bacon. Pick the mint leaves and discard the stalks. Finely grate the Parmesan. Bring a large pan of salted water to the boil and drop in the stock cube (if using). Stir until it's dissolved, then add the mini shells and cook according to the packet instructions. Get a large frying pan over a medium heat and add a good lug of olive oil. Add the bacon to the pan, sprinkle a little pepper over and fry until golden and crisp.



Meanwhile, finely chop your mint leaves. As soon as the bacon is golden, add your frozen peas and give the pan a good shake. After a minute or so, add the crème fraîche and chopped mint to the bacon and peas. Drain the pasta in a colander over a large bowl, reserving some of the cooking water.



Add the pasta to the frying pan. Halve your lemon and squeeze the juice over the pasta. When it's all bubbling away nicely, remove from the heat. The sauce should be creamy and delicious but if it's too thick for you, add a splash of the reserved cooking water to thin it out a bit. Add the grated Parmesan and give the pan a shake to mix it in.



Divide your pasta between plates or bowls, or put it on the table in a large serving dish and let everyone help themselves. Lovely with a simply dressed green salad.

Nutritional Information

Mini shell pasta with a creamy smoked bacon & pea sauce

Super fast and absolutely delicious

More Pasta recipes ->
0 foodies cooked this
This bacon and pea pasta has become a quick dinner classic round mine – five minutes and it's done
Serves 4-6
15m
Super easy
Print this recipe
Method

This is one of the dishes I cook for my kids, but to be honest, it's so good that me and Jools always eat it too! Mini pasta shells are actually meant to be added to soups, but they're quick and easy to cook, which makes them a good thing to serve with pasta sauces. All in all this should take you no more than five and a half minutes to cook. However, if you decide to go for a bigger type of pasta, remember that it will need more time to cook than these mini shells.

Finely slice the bacon. Pick the mint leaves and discard the stalks. Finely grate the Parmesan. Bring a large pan of salted water to the boil and drop in the stock cube (if using). Stir until it's dissolved, then add the mini shells and cook according to the packet instructions. Get a large frying pan over a medium heat and add a good lug of olive oil. Add the bacon to the pan, sprinkle a little pepper over and fry until golden and crisp.

Meanwhile, finely chop your mint leaves. As soon as the bacon is golden, add your frozen peas and give the pan a good shake. After a minute or so, add the crème fraîche and chopped mint to the bacon and peas. Drain the pasta in a colander over a large bowl, reserving some of the cooking water.

Add the pasta to the frying pan. Halve your lemon and squeeze the juice over the pasta. When it's all bubbling away nicely, remove from the heat. The sauce should be creamy and delicious but if it's too thick for you, add a splash of the reserved cooking water to thin it out a bit. Add the grated Parmesan and give the pan a shake to mix it in.

Divide your pasta between plates or bowls, or put it on the table in a large serving dish and let everyone help themselves. Lovely with a simply dressed green salad.

Nutritional Information Amount per serving:

Calories

Calories are just a unit of energy. If you eat more than you use you can gain weight, or lose it if you don't eat enough. How much you need depends on your weight, gender and how active you are, but it's around 2,000 a day.

Carbs

Carbs are a great source of energy and, excluding foods such as potatoes, are made from grains - like bread, pasta and cereal. We all need carbs, but try to make them all wholegrain by sticking to brown bread, rice and pasta - they are much more nutritious.

Sugar

We all deserve a treat sometimes, but try to limit your sugar intake. Most of your sugar should come from raw fruit and milk, because they give us lots of nutrients too. Always check food labels so you know how much sugar you're eating.

Fat

We all need to eat a small amount of fat because it protects our organs and helps us grow. But we need to be careful about how much fat we eat and what kinds of fat, because in higher levels it's associated with weight gain, diabetes, cancer and heart disease.

Saturates

Saturated or "bad fats" are in beef, pork, chicken skin, butter, cream and cheese. Too much can be bad for our heart and cholesterol levels, but unsaturated or "good fats" in fish, nuts, avocados and some oils can help keep our hearts healthy if eaten in moderation.

Protein

Protein helps our muscles to grow and repair, as well as providing you with essential amino acids. When it comes to protein, try to eat leaner sources such as chicken and fish or non-meat sources such as eggs, dairy, beans, nuts, seeds, tofu and pulses.
  • Calories 674
    34%
  • Carbs 85.9g
    33%
  • Sugar 5.3g 6%
  • Fat 20.3g 29%
  • Saturates 9.3g 47%
  • Protein 33.5g 74%
Of an adult's reference intake

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BUYING SUSTAINABLY SOURCED FISH

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Buying sustainably sourced fish means buying fish that has been caught without endangering the levels of fish stocks and with the protection of the environment in mind. Wild fish caught in areas where stocks are plentiful are sustainably sourced, as are farmed fish that are reared on farms proven to cause no harm to surrounding seas and shores.

When buying either wild or farmed fish, ask whether it is sustainably sourced. If you're unable to obtain this information, don't be afraid to shop elsewhere – only by shopping sustainably can we be sure that the fantastic selection of fish we enjoy today will be around for future generations.

For further information about sustainably sourced fish, please refer to the useful links below:

Marine Stewardship Council
http://www.msc.org/

Fish Online
http://www.fishonline.org

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  • 6 slices higher-welfare smoked streaky bacon or pancetta

  • 1 small bunch fresh mint

  • 100 g Parmesan cheese

  • sea salt

  • freshly ground black pepper

  • 1 organic chicken stock cube, optional

  • 400 g dried mini shell pasta

  • olive oil

  • 300 g frozen peas

  • 2 heaped dessertspoons half-fat crème fraîche

  • 1 lemon