Orecchiette with Peas, Pecorino and Onions is an easy recipe celebrating spring with two spring vegetables, peas and sweet onions. Pecorino Romano cheese adds great flavor and ties the pasta dish together. Read on for details, or click here to jump down to the recipe.
I am ready for spring! Though we can’t complain much about our winter in New England this year, spring weather has been slow to come. But the temperature is gradually creeping up, and hopefully we won’t have any more baseball games snowed out.
Making and eating food that is a harbinger of the spring season is one way to appreciate it. So I’m appreciative of Shelby from Grumpy’s Honey Bunch for hosting today’s Sunday Supper event celebrating spring.
Today we are sharing our spring recipe for Orecchiette with Peas, Pecorino and Onions. The dish features peas, an early arriving vegetable, and the sweet onions that start rolling into the grocery stores around the time the calendar changes to spring.
This pasta recipe is easy to get on the table in under 30 minutes. As the pasta cooks, the onions get caramelized to enhance their natural sweetness. The peas get added to cook along with the caramelized onions, then this mixture is tossed with the orecchiette and pecorino cheese. If you’re not familiar with orecchiette, it is a pasta shape that resembles a small ear. Orecchiette is just the right size to catch some of the peas. You could use other short pasta shapes here, but if you can find orecchiette I encourage you to use it.
I love the rich salty flavor that Pecorino Romano cheese brings to this dish. The recipe calls for more cheese than I would typically add, but adding a bit more really founds out the flavors, as the savory cheese balances the sweet onions.
For another delicious pasta recipe, try our Creamy Roasted Acorn Squash Pasta recipe.
A medium to full bodied white wine is a good choice for Orecchiette with Peas, Pecorino and Onions. There are a lot of good Italian whites that would qualify. For fun you could choose a wine made from the Pecorino grape–that’s right, Pecorino is a wine grape varietal as well as the name of a cheese. But there are many other good Italian whites that would go with this, such as a Soave or perhaps a Vermentino.
Though Italy is a natural choice for a pasta wine pairing, we wound up choosing a white Rhone blend of Grenache Blanc, Roussanne and Vermentino, and that worked nicely too.
Whatever you choose, we hope you enjoy this dish and some good spring weather!
Orecchiette with Peas, Pecorino and Onions
Orecchiette tossed with peas, pecorino cheese and sautéed onions for a tasty spring meal.
- Prep Time: 5 mins
- Cook Time: 20 mins
- Total Time: 25 mins
- Yield: 4 servings 1x
- Category: Main
- Method: stove top
- Cuisine: Italian
- Diet: Vegetarian
- 2 sweet onions, such as Vidalia, sliced thinly
- 3 tbsp extra virgin olive oil, divided
- 1 cup peas (thawed if using frozen)
- ½ tsp tarragon
- ½ tsp marjoram (or oregano if you’d prefer)
- ¾ cup Pecorino Romano cheese
- 12 ozs orecchiette or other short pasta shape
- salt and pepper to taste
- Heat 1 tablespoon olive oil in a skillet on medium heat. Cook until the onions start to brown and caramelize, at least 10 minutes. If you have time, let the onions go until they are nice and caramelized.
- Start cooking the pasta according to package instructions after the onions have been cooking for a few minutes.
- Add the peas to the onions, along with another tablespoon olive oil and the tarragon and marjoram. Stir to combine, and cover the skillet. Lower heat to cook on medium low for about 5 minutes.
- When the pasta is done to your liking, drain it, then toss immediately with the remaining tablespoon of olive oil onion/pea mixture. Next stir in the cheese, salt and pepper to taste. Plate and serve, passing additional cheese at the table.
Keywords: pasta, peas, vegetarian pasta, orecchiette, peas and pasta
The Finer Cookie/Kim
I know what you mean by the long winter in New England. Today is simply delightful and the first real day that promises no more winter! Orecchiette is one of my favourite pastas because it’s so chewy, but I’m also eyeing that cold glass of white wine. It’s almost noon.
good to hear from a fellow New Englander!
Yum! I can not wait till fresh peas arrive at my local markets to try your pasta recipe. Seriously it looks SOOOO good!
This is just lovely and I have all the ingredients on hand! I was actually just asking what I could possibly make with marjoram and here’s my answer!
Delicious. Hand me a glass of wine and a fork and I’d be all set!
wine does make it even better!
Dear David, what a fantastic meal! This looks good…perfect for busy weeknights. Take care, Catherine
This looks like the perfect light spring dinner. I love that you give wine recommendations as well. Thanks!
So simple, yet packed with delicious flavors. Can’t wait to try it.