After our big anniversary night out at Dinner Lab and far too many weekends away from my kitchen during the month of September, I felt like continuing our celebration via a meal at home this past Saturday evening.
I swung by Heinen’s after a solid class at Ride + Workout that morning and splurged a few of our favorite things: a Delmonico steak for Hans, a piece of wild caught salmon for me, and the ingredients for one of Hans’ favorite pasta dishes.
Inspired by a meal we had a Little Italy’s La Dolce Vita many anniversaries dinners ago, I recreated the sauce my redhead still talks about — a blend of tomatoes, pancetta, gorgonzola & parmesan. I did my best to recreate their “Fellini” sauce – at least I’m pretty sure that’s the name that the La Dolce Vita team actually calls it. For our (and this blog’s) purposes, it stuck — much like this sauce does to the right noodle.
For 2 large servings or 4 smaller servings for sides
- 1 cup of dry short cut pasta* (your many options here, thanks to Wikipedia)
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1 teaspoon of garlic, minced
- ¼ cup pancetta, diced
- 2/3 pint of grape tomatoes, halved
- Pinch of salt (to start, season to taste later)
- 1/2 teaspoon of pepper
- 1/4 cup of cream (milk if you’re in a pinch)
- ¼ cup of gorgonzola, plus extra for sprinkling
- ¼ cup of parmesan, plus extra for sprinkling
Heat a pot of water to boil. Add pasta to water when at rolling boil. Cook pasta to right before it gets al dente (you’ll finish cooking it in the sauce, so reserve some of the pasta water, just in case.)
In a large sauté pan set to medium-high, heat the olive oil. Add garlic, dropping the temperature to medium. Sauté for one minute.
Add pancetta, cooking for 2 minutes before adding the grape tomatoes, salt (go easy as there’s salt in the meat), and pepper. Sauté on medium-low until tomatoes start to break down, about 5-10 minutes. Add cream and stir, deglazing all that flavor off the bottom of the pan.
Heat the sauce to boil, then reduce heat to medium-low. Add the cooked pasta and stir. Simmer until pasta has soaked up the sauce, about 5 minutes. (If it needs a bit more moisture to finish melding flavors, add a very small about of pasta water now.) Stir in gorgonzola and parmesan. Turn off heat and allow cheese to melt into sauce/pasta combo.
Serve, sprinkling pasta with remaining cheese and enjoy.
*For my gluten free friends — this dish is easily made GF by the subbing of your favorite gluten free pasta!