As I noted here that I was going to participate in Jamie’s Huntington 1000. I wasn’t sure what I wanted to cook at first but I knew I wanted something quick, easy and cheap. Luckily on Jamie Oliver’s site he has a “Budget Meal” section that was perfect for me!
Eventually I decided to make this, mini shell pasta with a creamy smoked bacon and pea sauce because I was trying to find ways of using up the mint I had and the quarter bag of frozen peas in the freezer. Perfecto! Just a bit of a warning, this is not the healthiest recipe. In the recipe, he doesn’t discard the bacon fat so you’ll be eating oil, butter and fat. From my experience of shopping for creme fraiche, I found that only Trader Joe’s sells them so I went to the one in Brooklyn. I walked in and the first thing I did was to look for the tiny shell shaped pasta. The other thing I learned about Trader Joe’s is that I can never find what I’m looking for. This time was no different. They were totally out of the shell shaped pasta, wtf?! Will Jamie Oliver hate me if I substitute the shell shaped pasta with Trader Joe’s vegetable radiatore pasta?!?!?! They were kinda pretty and fall like. Oh well, recipes are guidelines anyways. So I got the veggie pasta, a pack of applewood smoked bacon and creme fraiche. Got home and started cooking.
So I didn’t really look at the exact amount for each ingredient. Knowing Jamie Oliver’s recipe, when it calls for butter its usually a knob of butter or to me that means about a tablespoon. I used 2 strips of bacon, about 1/4 bag of frozen peas, a big bunch of mint leaves, a little less than a cup of parmesan cheese, 1.5 giant spoonful of creme fraiche and enough pasta for 2 people.
So the end product should’ve been this clean looking pasta with a creamy sauce. Very Spring looking with the mint and peas. But mine looked very Fall like with the mutli-colored veggie pasta. Also I somehow ended up with no bubbly creamy sauce, there was no sauce at all. But it tasted pretty good! Maybe his idea of 2 heaping spoonful is more than my idea od 2 heaping spoonful. Also I need to save some mint leaves after the pasta is done, to sprinkle on top. I couldn’t taste the mint. Bacon and peas are a great comb though.