Paglia e Fieno (Straw and Hay)

Ingredients:

salt for the pasta pot

4 scallions

2 tbsp extra-virgin olive oil

1 cup shelled fresh peas, blanched or frozen baby peas, defrosted

6 to 8 slices imported prsciutto, cut crosswise into 1/2-inch-thick ribbons

2/3 cup chicken stock or canned low-sodium chicken broth

1/2 cup heavy cream

1 pound fresh paglia e fieno fettucine, or 1/2 pound dry egg fettucine and 1/2 pound dry spinach fettucine

3/4 cup freshly grated Grana Padano or Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese

Preparation:

  1. Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil over high heat.
  2. Trim the roots, tips, and any yellow or wilted leaves from the scallions.  Cut them in half lengthwise, then crosswise into 3-inch lengths.  Cut the scallion pieces lengthwise into thin strips.
  3. Heat the oil in a large, heavy skillet over medium heat.  Add the scallions, and cook until wilted, 1 to 2 minutes.  Scatter in the peas and cook until just tender, about 3 minutes.  Add the prosciutto, and toss until it changes color, 1 to 2 minutes.  Pour in the chicken stock, and bring the liquid to a boil.  Reduce the sauce to a simmer, and cook until the liquid is reduced by half.  Add the heavy cream, and continue to simmer until the liquid is lightly thickened, 2 to 3 minutes.
  4. Stir the pasta into the salted boiling water.  Return to a boil, and cook the pasta until al dente.  Fish the pasta out of the boiling water with a large wire skimmer, and add it directly to the sauce in the skillet, stirring to coat the pasta with the sauce.  Cook over high heat until the liquid is reduced enough to form a creamy sauce.  Remove from the heat, toss in the grated cheese, and serve immediately in warm bowls.

Recipe courtesy of Lidia’s Favorite Recipes by Lidia Matticchio and Tanya Bastianich Manuali