I kind of over-purchased some prosciutto that I used for a date night a few weeks ago.
Ok. I say over-purchased. I pretty much knew that I was buying too much, but I figured it’s never a bad thing to have really good cured meats laying around.
So bring on the prosciutto!
I, of course, ate some of it on it’s own with melon, but I still had plenty left over so I decided to make a big pasta salad with it.
This was absolutely perfect as a summer dish.
1) Cook bowtie pasta according to package.
2) Chop prosciutto into cubes. Add oil to a large pan over medium heat and add in prosciutto. Cook until crispy, about 3-4 minutes.
3) Add in halved tomatoes and stir to combine.
4) Toss in cooked, drained pasta and stir.
5) Add lemon juice.
6) If you want it creamier, add 1/2 cup cream or some of the original pasta water.
7) Toss in fresh arugula and taste for salt and pepper. It shouldn’t need much salt.
8) Add grated cheese and serve it up!
A Simple Pasta Salad
There’s really only a few ingredients for this salad, but each of them brings something delicious.
The real star of the show is the prosciutto of course. It’s better than bacon in my opinion. It also happens to be really expensive (usually around $30/pound for the good stuff) so a few ounces is all you need.
This was about 2-3 ounces of prosciutto.
To really bring out the prosciutto flavor, I added a few tablespoons of olive oil to a large pan (big enough to fit all the pasta also) and then tossed in my prosciutto over medium heat.
It’s so thin that it crisps up very quickly and also flavors the oil with delicious cured meatiness.
Then I added my grape tomatoes (which I cut in half) to the pot just to warm up and take on some of that prosciutto flavor.
When my pasta was done and drained, I tossed it into the pan and stirred everything together really well along with the fresh lemon juice. The prosciutto, oil, and lemon juice will kind of stick to the pasta and make a very light, but flavorful sauce.
If you want it saucier, you could add 1/2 Cup of the pasta water or even 1/2 Cup of cream which would give it some serious, well, creaminess.
I kept mine really light and simple though.
Once you get the base of the pasta all mixed together, add in the fresh arugula and grate on as much cheese as you want.
Taste it for salt and pepper. It probably won’t need much salt because the prosciutto and Parmesan are both very salty. I added a good pinch of red pepper flakes also for some heat but that’s pretty optional.
All told, the whole thing only takes 15-20 minutes to toss together and it’s hearty enough to have as a quick dinner.
As with a lot of the dishes I’ve been making these days, leftovers are great cold for lunch the next day!
There’s a ton of stuff you could add into this to make it your own. Think of my recipe as just a base to get you started!