Dinner with W

A couple weeks before Christmas, W and I made a cooking video together. We cooked Penne with Pancetta, Grape Tomatoes, Peas and Romano in my Mom’s kitchen (sadly, mine is not this nice – more on that later), and although I’m not super keen on seeing myself on TV these days (more on that later too) I agreed to share. W had a great time, his cousins showed up to watch (they’re off camera, giggling under the lights and occasionally behind the counter) and we all ate the pasta afterwards, and have made it once or twice since. W knows how now.

Barilla 1

(And here’s the recipe again, in case you missed it.)

Barilla 1
Barilla 1

Penne with Pancetta, Grape Tomatoes, Peas and Romano

Recipe link


February 7, 2014

Adapted from Barilla.

  • Makes: Serves 4-6.


1/2 box Barilla PLUS® penne or other chunky pasta

1/2 cup thinly sliced prosciutto or pancetta

extra virgin olive oil, for cooking

1 pint grape tomatoes, halved

1 cup frozen peas, thawed

1/2 cup grated Romano or Parmesan cheese, plus extra for serving

salt and black pepper, to taste


1In a large pot of water, cook the penne according to package directions. Before draining, reserve 1/2 cup of the cooking water. Drain and set aside.

2In a large, heavy skillet, sauté the prosciutto or pancetta in a drizzle of olive oil over medium-high heat until crisp. Add the tomatoes and cook until the skins are slightly blistered. Add the peas (they can go in straight from the freezer, even) and cook for a few minutes. Return the pasta to the pan, season with salt and pepper and add the cooking water, tossing to combine everything and create a bit of sauce. Add the Romano, too.

3Serve immediately, passing extra grated cheese at the table.

Makes: Serves 4-6.

About Julie

8 comments on “Dinner with W

  1. Jules @ WolfItDown
    February 9, 2014 at 1:07 pm

    I love how you use so much ham and peas in with all the pasta, as it tends to be too much pasta for me, leaving me feeling all bloated!
    The new pasta sounds really good too, I like when they mix grains and legumes, packed full of goodness!

    Your son did a great job helping :)

  2. the other Al
    February 9, 2014 at 6:07 pm

    Oh my gosh W looks like his dad! Right Wilam? What a riot. Pasta is good too!

  3. Avery
    February 9, 2014 at 6:29 pm

    So great to see the whole family in there! Great job!

  4. Laurie from Richmond
    February 9, 2014 at 7:31 pm

    Jules, if pasta makes you feel bloated, then use less. I don’t use it at all because it makes me feel so bad. You can make Italian, and even have it at restaurants without pasta, and feel better :)

  5. Nicole Boyhouse
    February 10, 2014 at 9:24 am

    This looks good – minus the meat for me – and I’m going to give it a try. I think you are great on TV! You look great and listening to your voice makes me want to hang out with you. Hey, let’s hang out! I’ll bring the wine :)

  6. Natalie
    February 11, 2014 at 2:25 pm

    You are so natural and poised in front of the camera. You showcase the product without being pushy. It was great. It is obvious you are a great mom too :)

  7. BOnnie White
    August 4, 2015 at 11:09 am

    I’ve been at school in the east and wanted to make something for some classmates what was quick and easy. You made this look so easy and delicious so I am going to serve this tonight. Thank you for making cooking a family affair.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.