so, i basically had a redo of last week. seriously. i followed the same exact script. cereal for breakfast. veggie sukiyaki for lunch. i gotta spice things up, because i think monotony is also a killer of the Meatless Monday.

but change came around dinner time, and i realized that i could either choose to fail or succeed. so, i mosied on to the kitchen and, realizing it was already clean and waiting for me to just cook, i made the decision to stop being lazy and just keep steadfast. it wasn't as hard as i was trying to make it seem. i whipped up my favorite summertime pasta dish with a bit of tweaking, using olive oil instead of pancetta. check it.

Sarah's Summertime Pasta

during the summer time, i make this pasta dish probably once a week. it's easy and fast but has big time flavors thanks to simple ingredients. you can sub in certain ingredients, like i did this time... i usually don't add anything else, but i had some leftover asparagus and decided to throw it in.


pancetta (i used olive oil this time. you can use bacon too if you like.)
a pasta of your choosing (i recommend penne, linguine, or even angel hair)
white, yellow or sping onions (i prefer spring onions, but i didn't have any this time, but found out that regular onions work just as well)
wild card ingredient
fresh tomatoes (any type/size, just make sure they're ripe and sweet)
splash of wine or stock or even pasta water
squeeze of fresh lemon
parmigiano reggiano
salt and pepper to taste


1. bring water to boil in a large pot, add salt then throw in pasta of choosing, making sure to stir so it doesn't stick.

2. in a sautee pan or wok, render pancetta over medium heat untile crispy, then remove. if using olive oil, just heat until fast in the pan.

3. cut the rest of the ingredients as small or large as you like. seriously, this recipe is easy as a summer's breeze, so you don't have to worry about cutting things just right. if you want large bits of onions and tomatoes cause that's how you roll, do you! i do suggest that you salt the tomatoes after you cut them, but before you add them to the pan to draw out it's natural juices.

4. first heat onions until almost cooked (about 5 minutes for regular onions, but about 2-3 minutes for spring onions), then throw in the garlic and your wild card ingredient and cook until done, heated through.

5. add tomatoes. cook until just heated through, which should take about a minute or two. don't cook too long or the tomatoes will becoming mushy pulp, unless you like it that way.

i used heirloom tomatoes in my dish, tis the season, and they were sweet and succulent.

6. here's my favorite part! add a splash of wine to deglaze the pan. if you don't have wine, you can use chicken/veggie stock or even some water from the boiling pasta, which will help the pasta amalgamate anyways. take this time to put your face over the pan and smell the goodness from the food. it's intoxicating.

7. add a squeeze of lemon, turn off the heat and stir in the cooked pasta.

8. roll about 6 leaves of basil into a cigar and cut it into ribbons (congrats, you just did a chiffonade of herbs!) or just rip it in your hands :) shave some parmigiano reggiano cheese (you can use the stuff in the green canister that we grew up on, but getting a small block of the real stuff is well worth the investment. just keep in wrapped and in a cool, dry place).

then add to the pasta and stir through until it's fragrant and you can no longer resist from sticking your fork in the pan.

in the end, i put a a lot of freshly ground pepper atop, because i just love pepper. what i didn't miss was meat. okay, maybe i missed the pancetta. baby steps. enjoy!
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