Pasta with Peas and Onions

My best friend Nicole’s parents have been making this for me since I was a kid. It’s so good that it might actually make your pea-doubting friends like the little green wonders! A big thank-you to Nicole for confirming my suspicions about how this dish is made. 🙂

Think you don’t like peas? Give this a try:

  • 15-oz can of peas, drained
  • 1 yellow onion, chopped small-ish
  • 1 tbsp tomato paste
  • 8 oz pasta (I used Rienzi Gluten Free Penne, but I prefer this recipe with smaller pastas)
  • Olive oil for frying
  • 1-1 1/2 cups shredded or grated Pecorino Romano cheese (you can also use Parmesan)
  • Salt to taste
  • Red pepper flakes to taste

This whole dish, which serves 3 or 4 people, will be done in about as long as your pasta takes to cook. Again, add some salt and olive oil to your pasta water before you drop the pasta in. You’ll thank me for it!

So, while your pasta cooks, put your onion and some olive oil in a pan on medium heat, and stir things around a bit. Once the onion starts to soften, add the tomato paste and stir. You can turn the heat down low if you think things are cooking too fast. You’ll want the onions to cook down a bit, but don’t let them brown. If they start to brown, turn the heat off and wait until the pasta is almost done to continue with the next step.

About a minute before the pasta is done, add roughly 3/4 cup of your pasta water (for me this was 3 pasta spoons’ worth) and then your peas to the pan, stir the stuff in with your onions, and simmer on low heat. Drain your pasta and turn the heat on your sauce off, then combine both in the pasta pot. Add your cheese and stir so that it melts in. Finish with salt and red pepper flakes, and maybe some more cheese… right, who am I kidding? Of course you should top it with more cheese!

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