CLASSIC pasta spaghetti with onion, pancetta and parsley








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There are a variety of presentations with spaghetti that simply use herbs, and that work very well. A basic one is to cook the spaghetti, drain, add  four tablespoons of butter, a half cup of basil a half cup of parsley and a quarter cup of pancetta. Stir well. Presto!

Here is another fantastic, but simple, herb-type sauce adapted from Marcella Cucina, see library.

This is also a favorite of nephew Josh's, and he was the chef for one evening during his last visit: this was the entre. Perfect!

for the sauce:

  • six ounces of pancetta or six ounces of bacon
  • six cloves garlic, peeled and minced
  • four medium onions, sliced and chopped quite thin, to get about four cups
  • six tablespoons olive oil (plus a little extra)
  • four tablespoons chopped parsley
  • two tablespoons butter
  • one half cup parmesan

for the pasta:

  • one pound spaghetti

Cut the pancetta into small strips: thin and about a half-inch long.

Put the olive oil and the garlic in a saute pan over medium heat. Add the pancetta or bacon and cook for about three minutes. Let it stay moist, not crisp.

Add the onions, stir them around. Add a teaspoon of salt and several grinds of pepper. Stir again. Cook over a low heat, just above simmer, for about fifteen to twenty minutes. Keep moist, adding a little more olive oil if needed. The onions should be soft, but not going to brown. Stir in three tablespoons of the chopped parsley.

In five quarts of water at a raging boil, add two teaspoons of salt, and the spaghetti. Cook until al dente. Reserve one cup of liquid. Drain.

Add the spaghetti to the heated sauce; stir; add the butter and stir; add reserved liquid as needed and stir. Then add the parmesan. Stir again. Put a cover on the pan, turn up the heat to high, and steam for one minute. This makes the pasta steaming hot, ready for the table. Serve topped with the last of the parsley.



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