This dish didn’t go over too well with me first time I made it. Something about peas, onions, Parmesan and first trimester pregnancy didn’t play well together, and after I’d served everyone else I ran to the bathroom to heave for the next 30 minutes.
This was when I was pregnant with child number two, the boy, so you’d think I’d have known better than to soldier on making it after that first inkling of nausea.
I couldn’t even look at orecchietti for years after that without urping.
But, time heals everything, and 11 years on, I pulled this recipe out of my well-thumbed Moosewood Restaurant Cooks at Home and thought it sounded good and easy enough to make for a weeknight dinner.
I riffed on this recipe:
4 medium onions (about 4 cups, sliced)
1 tablespoon olive oil
4 cups fresh or frozen green peas (about one pound)
salt and freshly ground black pepper
1 pound orecchietti (“little ears”)
Freshly grated Pecorino cheese (about 1 cup)
While pasta water boils, slice the onions and saute them until they begin to brown. Add the peas and salt and pepper to taste, and cook a few minutes longer. Add two tablespoons of the hot pasta water to the skillet, stir, reduce the heat, and cover.
Cook the little ears until they’re al dente, then drain, throw it back in the pot and toss it with the grated cheese. Top with peas and onions and serve immediately.
I only sliced one onion, I used about a cup of frozen peas, and I used Parmesan cheese. Still delicious.
Strangely enough, the boy wouldn’t eat it. Memories from within the womb?
Who cares. It fed me well for dinner and lunch the next day.