Fettuccine With Cream, Peas, and Bacon

Necessity is the mother of invention, and this recipe is based on items I always have in the pantry and freezer. Falling somewhere between carbonara and alfredo, it combines favorite ingredients to make a hearty pasta dish. This is comfort food at its best. It is now a classic in my home, a go-to recipe for unexpected guests—and for late night suppers when hunger strikes.

I use both white and green fettuccine to dress it up a bit, and mix everything together just before serving. The peas add freshness, the bacon crunch, and the cream, well, creaminess and richness. With a generous sprinkle of grated parmesan cheese and dash of nutmeg, this dish is just as perfect on a cold winter’s night by the fireplace as it is on a summer evening al fresco.

Serves 6

  • 6 rashers bacon, diced
  • 2 tablespoons butter, divided
  • 3 small or 1 large shallot, peeled and minced (about 1/2 cup)
  • 8 ounces fresh peas (from about 1 pound unshelled peas; or frozen, thawed)
  • 1 cup heavy cream
  • 1/2 cup grated parmesan cheese, plus more for serving
  • 1/8 teaspoon grated nutmeg
  • Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
  • 6 ounces spinach fettuccine
  • 6 ounces white fettuccine

In a sauté pan, cook the bacon until crisp. Drain on paper towels and set aside.

In a saucepan or saucier over medium-low heat, add a tablespoon of butter and cook the shallots until translucent. Stir in the peas. Add the heavy cream, grated parmesan cheese, and nutmeg, and season with salt and pepper. Simmer until the cheese melts and the sauce begins to bubble, about 4 minutes.

In the meantime, bring a large pot of salted water to boil and cook the pasta until al dente, following the package instructions. Drain and transfer to a decorative dish. Toss the pasta with a tablespoon of butter, then pour in the sauce and mix well. Sprinkle the bacon on top and serve immediately with extra parmesan cheese on the side.

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