Peas and Pancetta is a simple side dish that adds a touch of elegance to your dinner table. This delicious side dish can be made ahead and reheated right before serving.
My uncle Tony, who was an incredible cook, would make peas and pancetta as a side and immediately it turned whatever he was serving into something special. It’s so simple to make, that when I asked for the recipe, he gave me a look. That look meant no recipe was needed and to just do it. It turns out he was right. How easy can something be?
The steps are pretty basic and with the convenience of frozen peas, there’s no excuse not to make this dish any time of the year. I’ve added my own touch for this recipe by adding some orange juice. The orange juice mixes with the rendered fat and shallots creating a vinaigrette that blends well with the saltiness of the pancetta. A touch of pepper delivers just enough heat to make it interesting.
The trick to perfect Peas and Pancetta?
When you order your pancetta at the deli, have them slice it thin. Then, when you’re ready to make this dish, dice the pancetta. Instead of having chunks, you will have thinly sliced pieces which not only delivers better texture, it guarantees bits of flavor in every bite. I find it preferable than having chunks that can turn out to be a little chewy.
I think my uncle would have enjoyed my version of peas with pancetta. He taught me cooking was creating something delicious without worrying too much about rules and recipes. I’m very lucky to have had many cooking experiences with him. Spend time cooking with your family. Learn from them, teach what you learn, and share the love.
Peas and pancetta is a perfect addition for your Thanksgiving menu. But, don’t just wait for Thanksgiving, serve whenever you want a simple and tasty side.
Want to try some other delicious sides? Try:
- Mashed Potatoes
- Roasted Asparagus with Parmesan
- Green Beans Almondine
- Glazed Spiced Baby Carrots with Pecans
- Roasted Baby Potatoes with Rosemary and Thyme
- Roasted Brussels Sprouts with Bacon
Be happy, eat well.
Peas and PancettaPrint Recipe Pin Recipe
- 10 ounces frozen peas
- 1 shallot halved and thinly sliced
- ¼ pound pancetta sliced thin then diced
- ¼ cup orange juice or 2 tablespoons frozen orange juice concentrate
- Pinch of pepper
- Pinch of Kosher salt if needed
- In a large skillet, over medium heat, cook the pancetta until browned and crispy.
- This takes about 3 - 5 minutes. With a slotted spoon, remove the pancetta from the skillet and set it aside in a bowl.
- Add the shallot and cook until softened and starting to brown - about 2 - 3 minutes.
- Stir in the orange juice. It will bubble and mostly evaporate but the flavor will already be added. If using frozen orange juice concentrate, just stir in until it melts. It’s already concentrated eliminating the need to evaporate the liquid. Just mix it in.
- Add the peas and cook for 3 - 5 minutes until peas are warm. Taste for seasoning. The pancetta is a little salty, but season with a pinch of salt if you wish.