Creamy pistachio and pancetta pasta

Pancetta pistachio cream pasta

This delicious pasta dish was inspired by one of many mouth-watering meals we had in Sicily on a family holiday in 2016. Pistachios were found on just about everything (even spaghetti alle vongole!). This particular dish was really memorable – because it was simply heavenly, but also because of the location we ate it in…

We were at Bellavista Ristorante, a seafront restaurant on the North-Eastern tip of Sicily, in Torre Faro, near Messina – the very tip of the island, in the Strait of Messina, from where you can see across to Calabria.

In the photos below, you can see Hannah on the beach in Torre Faro, with Calabria a short distance away across the Strait, followed by the original creamy pistachio and pancetta pasta dish we ate in the restaurant.

So, nearly four years later, while having fun experimenting in the kitchen and creating recipes under the ‘Cooking with my daughter’ part of this blog (see also our Instagram account for photos, reels and live videos!), we decided to finally re-create this amazing yet incredibly simple dish.

In our recipe, we used home-made orecchiette (mixing up our regions, as orecchiette are from Puglia, but that’s ok – they work well with this sauce) – watch this space for the orecchiette recipe. They are remarkably simple to make. Meanwhile, take a look at our quick preview reel on Instagram.

Creamy pistachio and pancetta pasta sauce – Ingredients

(for 4 generous portions)

  • 200g diced pancetta (unsmoked)
  • 500ml single cream
  • 150g ground pistachios (we use the nut chopping/grinding attachment on the Nutribullet, which does this in seconds)
  • fine sea salt – to taste

Pasta – which one, and quantities…

Use a short pasta of your choice. We used home-made orecchiette (recipe coming soon!), but lots of different types of short pasta will work. For 4 generous portions, as a single-course meal, you will need around 500g of dry pasta.

If you are being more traditional and having this dish as a ‘primo piatto’ to be followed by a meat or fish dish, you’ll want to roughly halve the portions for the pasta and the sauce.

Method

Place a large pan of water over a high heat and add a generous amount of coarse sea salt (about a handful) and a few drops of vegetable oil.

While the pasta water comes to the boil, prepare the creamy pistachio and pancetta sauce:

In a large sauté pan, fry off the pancetta over a medium heat until it has browned and crisped off.

Drain off most of the fat, then reduce the heat to low and add the cream to the pan. Stir from time to time and, once the cream is simmering, stir in most of the pistachios (save about 25g for sprinkling later). Check for taste and add a little bit of fine sea salt if needed.

Once the water is boiling, cook the pasta to your liking (is there any other way than ‘al dente’?!). Once cooked, drain and add to the sauce in the sauté pan. Stir through with the low heat still on, then take off the heat and serve.

Sprinkle the remaining ground pistachios over each portion.

Pancetta pistachio cream pasta

Creamy pistachio and pancetta pasta | Gloriously Simple, Gloriously Good!

Toffee Malteser Decadence | Creamy Toffee Malteser Dessert

Toffee Malteser Decadence
Toffee Malteser Decadence | Quick Dessert | Good Food

 A delicious dessert, inspired by Eton Mess.  Very quick and simple to make, this is ready in about 10 minutes.  Perfect for impromptu entertainment!

Serves:                    4
Preparation Time: 10 mins

Ingredients

  • 1 x 397g tin sweetened condensed milk
  • 400ml fresh double cream
  • Toffee sauce – to taste
  • 100g Maltesers

Method

  1. Whisk the cream to a thick/firm consistency
  2. Whisk the condensed milk (it won’t thicken like cream but the whisking will help to lighten the texture by introducing air into the condensed milk)
  3. Place the Maltesers in a plastic food bag, close the bag, then using a rolling pin, hammer away at the Maltesers to crush them.  Don’t crush them too finely as the beauty of this recipe is the crunch that hits you with every decadent mouthful.  It’s particularly delicious if the pieces of Maltesers are uneven in size!
  4. Fold the condensed milk and approx. 2/3rds of the crushed Maltesers into the whipped cream
  5. Place some toffee sauce into the bottom of each of 4 dessert cups/wine glasses
  6. Place a good dollop of creamy mixture into each glass, on top of the toffee sauce
  7. Squirt some toffee sauce over the creamy mixture, then place the remainder of the creamy mixture on top
  8. Finish off by sprinkling the remaining crushed maltesers over the top of each cup/glass of dessert, with a final squirt of toffee sauce on top.  

To retain maximum crunch, don’t wait too long before serving, but if you don’t serve immediately, make sure you refrigerate the cups so the cream stays firm. 

Gloriously Good!!!

Toffee Malteser Decadence | Quick Dessert | Good Food

For more recipes, tips & general foodie stuff, go to www.gloriouslygoodfood.com