Servings: Serves 4
- 1 pound fresh pappardelle or fettuccine
- 1/3 cup and 1 Tbsp. extra-virgin olive oil
- 1 cup coarsely chopped red onion
- 2 Tbsp. sugar
- 1 Tbsp. salt
- 1/4 tsp. black pepper
- 2 cups fresh or frozen peas , thawed
- 1/2 cup chicken broth or water
- 1 Tbsp. butter
- 12 whole mint leaves , optional
- Freshly grated Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese to taste
- Whole cooked peas for garnish
Note: It's fine to use frozen peas (try petit pois for a more delicate flavor), but don't skimp on the fresh pasta.
Boil a large pot of salted water and cook pasta until al dente.
Meanwhile, in a wide skillet, heat 1 tablespoon olive oil over medium heat until hot. Add the onion, sugar, salt, pepper, and fresh peas. Cook 10 to 12 minutes or until vegetables are tender, stirring occasionally. (If using frozen peas, add them when onion is tender, and cook 2 minutes more, stirring.) Reserve whole peas for garnish, then transfer mixture to a blender and puree with broth or water and remaining olive oil, scraping sides of blender with a rubber spatula.
When pasta is done, drain it. Mix pea puree and butter in a saucepan; add pasta and stir until it's evenly coated. Add mint leaves and toss well. Serve with Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese and garnish with whole cooked peas.