Friday, October 29, 2010

How Easy is That?

That's the question the Barefoot Contessa's new book asks!  It's rhetorical and I can't help but answer it! I just got my copy in the mail and really enjoyed it so far. Great recipes, beautiful pictures, hey, it's Ina Garten, so I'd expect nothing less! It delivers a ton of easy recipes, already bookmarked!   So the answer to "How Easy is That?" would be a resounding "VERY EASY!"

First recipe I tried was the Snap Peas with Pancetta! Just happen to have Pancetta in the freezer for just in case. Hey, you never know when you might need some Italian bacon!  You could use regular bacon, too, if you wanted. I loved it, and ending up serving it warm, but would be just as nice as a cold side! Even Miss Picky liked it! I made the peas ahead and although when I reheated it after shocking it, the green wasn't as bright, it was still so good! Would have been better if I remembered to sprinkle the Pecorino on. Can't remember everything. And I usually don't!

Snap Peas with Pancetta

1 tablespoon salt
1 pound sugar peas, trimmed
1/4 pound pancetta, diced
1/2 cup olive oil
2 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice
2 tablespoons white wine vinegar
1/4 cup minced red onion
5 tablespoons freshly grated Pecorino Romano cheese
salt and freshly ground black pepper

My notes -- Instead of blanching you can also steam the snap peas in the microwave on high power for about 6 minutes, then drain in a colander and immerse in ice water. I also served it warm, so I heated it again in the microwave for about 2 minutes before I added the vinaigrette and bacon. If you make the peas in advance and reheat, it loses it's bright green color but still tastes delicious!

Bring 2-3 quarts of water to a boil in a large pot and add 1 tablespoon salt. Fill a large bowl with ice water and have a colander ready in the sink. Put the snap peas into the boiling water for about 15 seconds, drain in the colander in the sink, and immediately put them in the bowl with the ice water. Cool completely and drain. Cut each snap pea in half lengthwise and place in bowl.

Place the pancetta and 1 tablespoon of water in a medium saute pan and cook over medium heat, tossing occasionally, until the pancetta is browned evenly and crisp. Transfer to a plate lined with paper towels to cool.

To make the vinaigrette, whisk together the olive oil, vinegar, and lemon juice. Pour vinaigrette over the snap peas, add the red onion, pancetta, and Pecorino. Toss well and season with salt and pepper, to taste.

And I'll join Suzy from Kitchen Bouquet with an Ina Garten Flashback for Flashback Friday. If you haven't tried it, The Barefoot Contessa Guacamole Salad is a really big, big favorite here. Click here to see the post on Guacamole Salad!


  1. Yummy! I love simple and delicious stir-fries like this!

  2. even though i dont eat pancetta, that looks delish, maybe can try something like sausages or just leave it out. have a nice week end

  3. LOVE Ina and this looks GOOD! Thanks for the tip on the cookbook!

  4. I love cookbooks! This one looks like fun! Great recipe! ♥

  5. Snap peas with pancetta.. sounds great! Thanks for sharing this recipe and the cookbook. It's a must have for every cook.

  6. This does sound easy and good with the crispy pancetta (even if without the pecorino). I'm saving this one to try!

  7. I hadn't even heard of this book - I'll have to look for it. Thanks for the tip!

  8. Almost anything is good with pancetta. Looks great Carol.
    Saw Ina's friend yesterday, he walked by and waved. Still waiting for Ina to come to his new digs and do a show. I don't watch that often so let me know! I always forget when she is on!
    It won't be for awhile as the house isn't quite ready for prime time!

  9. This looks divine. And since the child ate it then it is a winner!

  10. Great dish - everything I like! Don't see pancetta often in these parts but every once in awhile...YES..I live in the sticks!! ;)

  11. I want this cookbook. I love Ina but often her cooking is a little complicated for every day. Oh I don't need another cookbook :). We love sugar snap peas, add bacon, even better! These look delicious.

  12. This looks yummy!! My good friend just gave me this book signed by Ina herself. It seems Ina was in Massachusetts this week and my friend was kind and generous enough to get me a copy.

  13. I love Ina Garten too. What a simple and easy dish to make. I can't wait to try it substituting the pancetta with mushrooms.

  14. This new Ina Garten Cookbook is on my Christmas list!!!

  15. Yummy! Ina is one of my favorite shows to watch at FoodNetwork. The combination of the cheese and pancetta sounds good.

  16. This sounds like a wonderful flavor combination! I need to try it soon.

  17. What a simple and tasty dish! No more take out? LOL

  18. Well how easy was that? :-) Looks great.I wish I was better about storing things like pancetta in my freezer. I just leave it in my fridge until I feel like I should throw it out...always waiting for a special pancetta occasion lol. Thanks for joining me this week!


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