Delicious pasta shells tossed in a creamy white wine sauce loaded with bacon, peas and spinach. Dry white wine, lots of garlic, a splash of cream and nutty Parmesan come together for a silky-smooth sauce. It’s light with a hint of indulgence and finished off with a handful of crunchy pistachios on top. A no-fuss pasta dish you can call on any night of the week, yet special enough to make for a dinner party. Just add a big salad alongside and enjoy.
And again, the delicious sauce does the magic trick. Before draining the pasta, we scoop out some of that starchy water, and let it cook for a couple of minutes to thicken the sauce, it’s a trick that works like a charm. This way, the whole dish gets body and an irresistible creamy texture. Then, we toss in the veggies and hearty bacon and call it a dinner.
Let me guide you through the recipe with this step-by-step VIDEO.
– the pasta shapes that best complement this sauce are small-shaped pieces that hold the sauce, like shells, orecchiette, penne, or fusilli
– swap spinach for cooked broccoli or baby kale
– use mushrooms instead of bacon for a vegetarian version
-serve with a simple side salad
More pasta, please!
- 250 g (8.8 oz) pasta shells
- 200 g (7 oz) salty bacon, cut into lardons
- 100 g (3.5 oz) peas, frozen
- 50 g (1.8 oz) spinach
- 4 garlic cloves, minced
- 2 tbsp olive oil
- 1 tbsp unsalted butter
- 150 ml (2/3 cup) dry white wine
- 100 ml (1/2 cup) cream 20%
- 50 g (1.8 oz) grated Parmesan, more for serving
- 1/2 tsp each: salt, black pepper, red pepper flakes, dried sage
- 4 tbsp toasted salted pistachios
Add the pasta to a large pot of boiling, generously salted water. Cook for 2 minutes less than the package’s instructions. Drain, reserving 1/2 cup of the cooking water.
In the meantime, heat oil and butter a large pan over medium-high heat. Add bacon, cook until crispy and golden brown, stirring occasionally, for about 5 minutes. Transfer to a plate, while trying to leave as much grease as possible in the pan.
To the same pan, add garlic. Cook over low heat, about 2 minutes or until fragrant and soft. Pour in white wine, stir with a wooden spoon to dissolve the browned bits from the bottom. Bring to a boil. Stir in the spices. Add pasta, peas and 1/4 cup of the cooking water, simmer for 2 minutes.
Add spinach, stir until slightly wilted. Add cream, stir until combined. Gradually stir in the Parmesan cheese until it melts into the sauce. Lastly, add bacon back to the pan. Toss to combine. Taste the pasta and season with more salt if needed.
Divide the pasta among bowls. Garnish with the pistachios, more grated Parmesan and black pepper. Enjoy!