It's hard not to be charmed by the salty-sweet marriage of pancetta and melon. (And with a summer crop that's sweeter than ever, now's the time to reach for the melon baller.) Here the classic pair is joined by fresh mint and tangy feta in a bright pasta salad that satisfies every taste bud.
ORECCHIETTE WITH MELON, PANCETTA, FETA & MINT
[Adapted from Bon Appetit]
2 ounces thinly sliced pancetta
6 ounces orecchiette pasta
3 Tbsp extra-virgin olive oil
2 Tbsp white wine vinegar
2 cups cantaloupe, scooped with melon-baller
1/3 cup coarsely chopped fresh mint, divided
1 small red onion, thinly sliced
Pinch crushed red pepper flakes
Freshly ground black pepper
1 ounce crumbled feta
Heat oven to 350dgF. Place pancetta in a single layer on a large rimmed baking sheet. Bake until brown and crispy, about 20 minutes. (Even faster: place pancetta between folded layers of paper towels on a microwave-safe plate and microwave on high for about 5 minutes.) Let pancetta stand until cool enough to handle, then break into bite-size pieces.
Meanwhile, cook pasta in a medium pot of boiling salted water, stirring occasionally, until al dente. Drain pasta; run under cold water to cool. Drain and set aside.
Whisk oil and vinegar in a large bowl. Add cooked pasta, melon, red onion, half of the mint and pancetta pieces, and a pinch of red pepper flakes. Toss to coat. Season to taste with salt and pepper. To serve, garnish with crumbled feta and sprinkle remaining pancetta and mint over top.
What an exciting mix of ingredients and I'm mad for mint this summer! Putting it on my "to try" list. thanksReplyDelete