You probably don’t know this about me but up until a month ago I didn’t own a copy of Mario Batali’s Babbo cookbook and I don’t even have a good reason why not. Batali is one of my favorite chefs…Babbo one of my favorite restaurants....How did I not have this cookbook?
Well I’m happy to report that the situation has been rectified and I’m now the proud owner of the Babbo cookbook. My first venture into this new book had me cooking an adapted version of Black Pepper Tagliatelle with Parsnips and Pancetta. I say adapted because somehow when making the pasta I forgot to add the black pepper to my dough. So my version is sans the black pepper pasta. Still fresh and still delicious.
I can probably guess what you’re thinking at this point…”With all of the recipes in that book why the heck would I choose one with parsnips?” And you’re right “why would I“…geez I’m not sure I ever even had parsnips before. But remember the other ingredients are pancetta and pasta; both of which I love.
How would I describe this dish...well the sweetness of the parsnips combined with the saltiness of the pancetta tossed with fresh pasta was a match made in heaven. Try it for yourself and let me know what you think.
Tagliatelle with Pancetta and Parsnips
(adapted from Babbo Cookbook)
•1 lb Tagliatelle (homemade or store bought)
•1/4 pound pancetta, or good quality bacon, cut into 1/2-inch cubes
•1 tablespoon unsalted butter
•1/2 pound parsnips, peeled, halved, and cut into 1/4-inch half moons (omit the thickest part of the ends)
•Freshly ground black pepper
•1 bunch flat-leaf parsley, finely chopped to yield 1/4 cup
•Parmigiano-Reggiano, for serving
In a 12 to 14-inch saute pan, cook the pancetta over high heat until it is browned and the fat has been rendered, about 10 minutes. Add the butter and parsnips and saute over high heat without shaking the pan too much until they are golden brown and slightly crispy, 5 to 6 minutes. Season, to taste, with salt and pepper, add the parsley, and cook 1 minute longer.
Cook the tagliatelle in boiling water until tender yet al dente. Drain the pasta, reserving some of the cooking water, and add the pasta to the pan with the pancetta and the parsnips. Toss over high heat to coat the pasta, adding pasta cooking water if necessary to keep the sauce form getting too tight. Divide equally among 4 heated pasta bowls, grate Parmigiano-Reggiano over the top of each bowl, and serve immediately.
***I'm submitting this to Presto Pasta Nights hosted this week by Pia of Cook Healthy. Stop by on Friday to check out all of the delicious pasta dishes. ***