Straw and Hay Pasta

Paglia e FienoToday’s recipe is another in a series celebrating the Spring harvest. Thus far, we’ve prepared dishes that included artichokes, asparagus, and ramps. Today, I’m going to share a recipe that comes from Lazio, Rome’s district, and that features freshly shelled peas and prosciutto in a cheese-flavored cream sauce. And if that hasn’t grabbed your attention, the pasta’s two colors surely will. This dish, you see, is named after the pasta used to make it, but calling it “Giallo e Verde”, “Yellow & Green”, would be so not Italian. As I’ve mentioned in the past, when it comes to naming pasta, the Italians have always let their imaginations run wild — and this pasta is no different. Here, it’s not yellow pasta but straw, paglia, while the green pasta is hay, fieno. Ready in minutes, Paglia e Fieno is another great tasting pasta to add to your arsenal, whether served as a primo piatto or main course.

This was a favorite of both families in the old two-flat every Spring. Unlike today, frozen foods were just beginning to appear in stores, so, making this dish meant shelling peas. I can remember helping Mom shell them —  until I grew up a little and the novelty wore off. After that, I made myself scarce when the metal colander and bag of peas appeared. Still, even once Bird’s Eye became a household name, fresh peas continued to be used to make this dish each Spring. As good as frozen peas may be, you just cannot beat the taste of fresh and if there’s one thing to be said about the best of Italian cooking, it’s that it relies upon the freshest of ingredients. To that end, my Zia and I continue to enjoy this dish every Spring and it wouldn’t be Easter at her youngest Son’s home if Paglia e Fieno isn’t served.

As mentioned earlier, this dish’s name comes from the coloring of the pasta. Green-colored noodles can be found in many groceries, some even packaged with yellow and bearing the name of  Straw & Hay. You certainly needn’t buy it if you don’t want to. Just using Mom’s pasta dough recipe as-is, or a fraction thereof, will give you the straw. To make hay — whether or not the Sun shines — add a couple of tablespoons of cooked, chopped spinach to the eggs before adding them to the flour when you make the dough. (Mom & Zia used spinach baby food to make pasta verde but spinach baby food is now only sold when combined with peas or beans. The color, as a result, isn’t as deep.) Moving away from the pasta, the thickness of the prosciutto to be used is totally up to you. For the dish pictured, I was lucky enough to be at my Greek market just as the deli was putting out a package of prosciutto end slices. At about ⅛ inch thick, these were easily chopped and, for my taste, stood up to the cream sauce very well. You can ask your deli to cut the prosciutto thicker or, if you prefer to use it thinly sliced, shred it before adding it to the pan.  Lastly, be sure to set aside some pasta water. The cream sauce can “seize up”, meaning get too dry, particularly if you’re timing is off and it is left waiting for the pasta to finish cooking. Adding a splash of pasta water can revive it, as well as later, should it seize up again once the cheese is added.

*     *     *

Paglia e Fieno

*     *     *

Paglia e Fieno Recipe


  • ½ lb (225g) yellow fettuccine (linguine, tagliatelle, or pappardelle may be substituted)
  • ½ lb (225g) green-colored pasta of the same type as the yellow pasta
  • 3 tbsp (45ml) butter
  • 1 tbsp (15ml) olive oil
  • 1 small onion, chopped fine
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 cup (236ml) heavy cream
  • 1 cup (140g) fresh peas
  • 4 to 6 oz (110 to 170g) prosciutto
  • ½ cup (60g) Pecorino Romano cheese, grated — more for serving
  • salt and pepper, to taste
  • fresh parsley, chopped — for garnish


  1. Bring a large pot of water to the boil for cooking the fettuccine. Time it so that the pasta is just shy of al dente about the time that the peas are cooked to your liking. Reserve 1 cup of the pasta water.
  2. Heat oil and butter in a large, deep frying pan over med-high heat. Add onion and sauté until translucent, about 5 to 8 minutes. Add garlic and continue to cook for another minute.
  3. Add heavy cream and simmer a few minutes until slightly reduced.
  4. Add the prosciutto and peas, stirring till well-combined.  If sauce becomes too thick, add a little pasta water to thin it.
  5. When pasta is just shy of al dente and peas are sufficiently cooked, taste to check seasoning and add the cooked pasta to the frying pan. Stir well. If necessary, add some pasta water to thin the sauce.
  6. Remove from heat, add grated cheese, mix thoroughly, and move to serving platter.
  7. Serve immediately, garnished with grated cheese, parsley, and cracked pepper.
*     *     *


This dish is just as good when prepared with pancetta, bacon, or ham in place of the prosciutto. Because they’re raw, though, be sure to saute the pancetta or bacon with the onions before adding the cream and peas. And if someone at your table doesn’t like peas, other vegetables can be substituted. Asparagus is commonly used, as are sliced crimini mushrooms. No matter what you choose to add, be sure it’s fresh and you cannot go wrong.

*     *     *

Fold, Cut, Unfurl Fettuccine Verde

*     *     *


You probably noticed that salt wasn’t added to the recipe until the end. That’s because some of the ingredients can be pretty salty in their own right. The salt content of the prosciutto — or it’s substitutes of pancetta, bacon, and ham — can vary greatly. The cheese and amount of pasta water you use can, also, add a fair amount of salt to the final dish. So, although I’ll season the dish liberally with pepper throughout its cooking, I’ll only use salt minimally, if at all, until I’ve tasted the dish at the very end. Even then, I may not add any. Again, let your own palate be your guide.

Spinach is not the only ingredient used to color pasta. I’ve used tomato paste to make pasta rosso (red), and I’m aware that beet juice can be used to make it purple, pasta viola, while squash is used to give pasta an orange hue, pasta arancione. And no discussion of pasta coloring would be complete without mentioning pasta nera which gets its black color from the ink of squid (calamari) or cuttlefish (seppia). If you find that a different color palette tickles your palate, you may wish to check out my recipe for Tricolor Risotto, which uses pesto and tomato paste to create a risotto platter that bears the colors of the Italian flag.

*     *     *

By any other name …

“Opening Night”

*     *     *

About these ads

124 thoughts on “Straw and Hay Pasta

    • 10 years is an awful long time to go without a favorite dish, Roger. And if that dish is a pasta, well, that’s unthinkable! …

      I’m back now. I needed a cocktail after learning of your deprivation. As you know, this is one of the easiest pasta dishes to prepare. Surely you can find some pasta somewhere, forget about the colors, and make this. I’m in your corner. If you decide to make pasta and need help, I’m here for you. 10 years? Incroyable!

  1. John, making the different flavours and colours in pasta, is always fun..I too love paglia e fieno and true the richness and redness of fresh egg yolks will always result in a beautiful ‘straw’ colour.
    I have a perfect photo of my mum in her younger years, just doing that of picking fresh peas with her apron hoisted as a basket and I too, memories helping my Nonna shell many pea pods for risi e bisi…a fantastic recipe and a beautiful rose! Have a glorious day! x

    • Thank you, Yvette, for always leaving such nice comments. That sounds like a wonderful photo of your Mum and too bad you haven’t any of yourself shelling peas with your Nonna. I would have loved to have seen them. Have a great week!

  2. Every Wednesday I look forward to your posts and wonder what you´ll delight us with. Well, you never fail to delight! This is such a great dish and I remember my brother going through a phase one summer in Italy of ordering it at every meal as he loved the colours! Don´t know why I have never made this at home…time to put that right. I love the photos, especially the one of the peas. So pretty and it also brings back memories of shelling peas (and eating more than went into the bowl).

    • That’s kind of you to say, Tanya. Thank you. Your brother and I would have gotten along famously! This was always a favorite of mine when young. Oh, who am I kidding? I loved any kind of pasta when I was young — and still do! Like you, we ate a whole lotta peas while shelling them. Mom often scolded us when we over-indulged. Imagine that! Being told not to eat vegetables. It really was a different time, eh?

  3. What fond memories you brought back to me with the shelling activity in this post John. Thank you. My Mom used to get us to shell the peas for her Hungarian Pea Soup with dumplings. The peas were so sweet, she even put some of the shells in but you have to peel the ‘plastic’ skin off. The dumplings were do good!
    Coloured pasta has always intrigued me, does it have the flavour of the colouring? I really live the thicker pasta you have pictured, something to sink your teeth into.

    • Memories of sitting on the picnic table summer evenings shelling big bowls of peas into a colander … Nice to revisit that childhood time. I’m seeing Mom tonight for her 75th birthday; I think we’d both enjoy sharing those food memories. No Italian food there (pizza from a box definitely doesn’t count), but I can create another Italian food memory for my kids by adding this lovely pasta to my repertoire. I know they’d all love it!

      • Well, a very happy birthday to your Mom, Mar! Cent’ anni!

        To this day, I’ve never had pizza from a box. I remember some 30 years ago, I had friends over for a little party and I made pizzas. A couple of them were astounded and had never had home-made pizza before.
        I do hope you try this pasta, Mar. It is so easy to make and yet full of flavor. I’m sure you’ll really enjoy it.

    • You’re very welcome, Eva. It seems that I’ve given quite a few of my blogging friends a a little dose of nostalgia with today’s post. I bet your Mom’s Hungarian Pea Soup was delicious, especially with dumplings. Have you blogged the recipe?

      Depending upon how much “dye” is used to color the pasta, it can mildly affect the taste. Much depends on what’s being used and the type of sauce used to dress the dish. Sepia/squid ink has a strong taste and if you want a truly black pasta, you’ll taste it. Now, I do not mind these flavors in the least. In fact, once in Venice, I had a dish of pasta and the sauce was made using sepia ink. It was a bowl of black with pasta in it — and the taste was incredible! It smelled and tasted like the Sea. For some unknown reason, I’ve been cutting my pasta a bit thicker these days. As you suggest, I like the “chew” of it better. :)

      • I just found a new place to review comment responses which is great because I had not seen my neglect the other way, sorry about that. I do enjoy your comments and responses as they are so thoughtful and detailed, so I apologize for not seeing this one.
        Sadly I have not blogged about the peas soup, it was sweet and the dumplings were slightly chewy, so delicious. I think I will make this one night JT is working (he’s not a fan of dumplings in soup—go figure).
        When I made my own pasta, I made mine a little thicker too. I also love the taste of the sea (that’s why malpeque oysters are my favourites, they taste most of the ocean of the oysters I’ve tried). I wonder how someone figured out that squid ink was edible? Perhaps antiquity had a “Mikey” too! (remember, let’s get Mikey to try it?).

        • So sweet of you to come back, Eva. Thank you.
          You Mother’s pea soup does sound delicious especially with dumplings. Such a clever twist on croutons.
          You’re right to wonder about the first person to eat squid ink. How about the brave souls who ate mushrooms, especially after knowing others have died trying them? Or sea urchins? Our fore-foodies were an adventurous lot! I would have starved. “You expect me to eat that?” :)

  4. I’m having some difficulty selling a not-red pasta sauce to the Angel, but she adores peas, so maybe that will do the trick!
    Last year, after I posted about shelling peas, my mother dug around and found a picture of us and my Grams when I was about three, sitting at the big table with a pile of fresh peas in front of us. If mine ever ripen this year, we might get to use it….it was 48F when I got up this morning. :(

    • You’ve worked miracles with your Angel. I’ve no doubt that you’ll have her eating red sauce. It’s just a matter of time. I hope you have reason, this year, to post that picture but 48˚? That’s the kind of weather that my Zia is getting in Michigan. Hopefully, that will be the end of it. Around here, it certainly feels like we’ve rounded a corner and we’re in a Summer weather pattern now. (Of course, I’ve just jinxed us and there’ll be a frost tonight.) :)

  5. Oh man! I remember shelling peas and bean while sitting on the back steps. That way if anything went flying off it wouldn’t have to be cleaned up. Nature would eat it. I suppose you could always make your own baby food spinach in a pinch :)

    • Funny thing, Teri. I expected my siblings to see that colander and remember Mom. I didn’t even consider how many other people would remember shelling peas, too. It’s been a treat reading everyone’s recollections of what was a very common experience, at the time.

      Thanks for the suggestion but I think I’ll just use some chopped spinach to make my pasta verde. I’ll save my baby food making for sometime down the road, when I need it personally. :)

  6. Pingback: Pasta Paglia e Fieno - Straw and Hay Pasta Recipe | Le Marche and Food |

  7. Pingback: Pasta Paglia e Fieno – Straw and Hay Pasta Recipe | Internet Billboards

  8. John how did you do that, make that first photo look like you can pick one of those peas right off the computer screen…perfecto!
    we make this but we use malfalda pasta (skinny long, like lasagna noodles)
    tonight my oldest son is home and he wants “Italian night” so it is a big pot of meatballs and sausage and spaghetti…oh and vino!!

    • forgot to mention the rose, beautiful…I would like to start growing them but I don’t know how to trim the bushes after they bloom, can you direct me to a good site on the computer. I grew up in Madison, NJ its is know as “The Rose City”
      I would like to remember my home town with a few rose bushes…

      • Madison looks like a nice place, pretty close to NYC. There are plenty of sites for rose care, Maria. The TLC channel has some helpful info here: and here’s another site dedicated to rose care:

        After a rose has bloomed, a rule of thumb I follow is to prune off the dead bloom, cutting on an angle, just above a stem of 5 leaves. Most often, a new shoot will grow from where that stem of leaves meets the stalk.

        I hope these 2 sites are of help, Maria. If you’ve a good garden center nearby that sells roses, there is usually a “rose expert” in charge. I’ve one near here and she has been invaluable, particularly is selecting roses for my climate. Good luck!

    • Oh, I know malfalda pasta and really do like it. Mom didn’t serve it at all frequently but it certainly has made many an appearance at my own dinner table. That is going to be one fantastic meal you’ll be serving for Italian Night! How do I get an invite? It sounds wonderful! :)

        • That’s very kind of you, Maria. If ever I’m in the area, I’ll be sure to look you up. If for no other reason than to say, “Hi!”
          Your question about roses had been marked as spam, for some reason. I just “found” it and answered it. Sorry for the delay and thanks again. :)

  9. Unfortunately, peas are not viewed favorably around our table (read: hubby hates them), so it is quite unlikely I can make this recipe, though I can admire it on my screen (love the pea photo!). My friend just picked up some end cut prosciutto for me from Whole Foods the other day, which was a fraction of the regular price and it was beautiful! What a glorious discovery!
    Using freshest of ingredients is a quality of Italian cooking that I admire and enjoy, though not the only reason it is my favorite cuisine. :)

    • Too bad about the peas, Judy, but you can substitute another vegetable — or none at all — if you prefer. Since finding those prosciutto ends, I’ve gone back to that spot of the deli counter religiously, hoping for their return. They are just perfect for so many recipes. I’m glad you got hold of some! :)

  10. My recipe file is growing because of your great lessons and pictures to match. Thank you so much for sharing and giving me the encouragement to cook more.


    • Thank you, Francine. That’s music to my ears. The idea of this blog is to document and share my family’s recipes so that they aren’t lost. Every time someone tries one, it means I’ve succeeded. :)

  11. I definitely prefer fresh peas – I almost never buy frozen. That’s a fantastic dish and great descriptions of the pasta colouring. Beautiful first picture of peas too!

    • Thanks, MD. I must admit to having fallen victim to the frozen peas trap. Making this dish, though, re-acquainted me with the fresh and, frankly, what was I thinking buying frozen? These taste so much better and are perfect against the saltiness of the prosciutto. And my parrot loves ‘em, too! :)

    • Thank you, David. That’s one benefit of this blog that I never expected. Writing these family recipes is always accompanied by a flood of memories, many of which I haven’t recalled in years. It’s having the same effect with my family members and it is wonderful to read how many memories a post can evoke for my blogging buds. :)

  12. I posted a very similar recipe tonight but mine was straight from a Jamie Oliver cookbook – nothing as authentic as yours and mine used farfalle not fettucine. This is a wonderful looking pasta; I just love the colours and your tips regarding the pasta water are so valuable. Thanks John xx

    • I just checked out your recipe, Charlie, and it’s a good one. It’s all about the sweet peas and the salty prosciutto. They make a winning combination, that’s for sure.
      I’ve made it a habit now that, no matter what kind of pasta I’m serving, I reserve a cup of pasta water just in case things go awry. It has saved many a pasta dish for me.

  13. Freshly shelled peas, another fabulous spring treat, my mouth is watering reading your recipe and looking at the finished dish. I do like thickly sliced prosciutto and will look for the end cut when I go to my favorite deli, hard to come by though.
    That is a perfect rose, I assume it is from your garden..

    • Thanks, Norma. Yes, the prosciutto ends are hard to come by but oh, so worth it if you find them. I’m considering asking the deli man to save them for me. It certainly doesn’t hurt to ask. :)

  14. Beautiful rose, John! I do much better with fresh peas…I think it’s that I grew up on overcooked, mushy frozen ones. This recipe makes such a pretty presentation it would be hard not to find it inviting! I added it to my Pinterest board…not just for sharing, but so I can easily refer to it! I’d enjoy it :-) Debra

    • Thanks, Debra. I hope you do try this pasta. It is really quite simple to prepare and, although the pasta in two colors is nice. it’s certainly not necessary if you cannot find them. Any kind of flat noodle will do. That rose is my favorite and is the first that you see as you enter my yard. There’s more to show in the weeks ahead.

  15. SOLD! Dinner is sorted then, if i can only get our john to stop eating the peas before they even get into the kitchen! very cool.. and lovely suggestions about colouring the pasta too.. mine is so bright yellow because of the eggs! I will try the green! Have a fab day, this last week has been perfect rose weather as that simply magnificent shot of your rose proves.. stunning! c

    • Thanks, Celi. I know about the eggs and pasta. I’ve been buying my eggs from the farmer’s market and my pasta has never looked so good. I planned a rose bed while I was recuperating from a surgery a number of years ago. My pain medication was quite strong. This bit of info may not mean much to you now but, I guarantee, it will make more sense later. :)

    • Thanks, Claire. This is a great dish and one that I really enjoy every Spring. And, yes, that rose is my favorite in the garden. It’s a hybrid tea and is among the first and last to bloom each year, with usually about a dozen flowers in bloom all season. It’s a real beauty!

  16. John, your first picture should grace the cover of a book – it’s just too gorgeous and the pasta dish is fantastic – I love the idea of using two different colour pastas!
    Perfect rose! :-) Mandy

    • Aw, thanks, Mandy! This is a great tasting pasta but don’t let not having the two pasta colors stop you from enjoying it. It’s just as tasty with plain yellow noodles. :)

  17. I’m with Mandy, that first photo is stunning!! Almost looks fake. Also, just thought I’d point out that my mouth is literally watering after looking at the photos/reading the recipe. This is my ideal meal, and you know I’m a sucker for pasta. Looks divine!!!

    • And thank you, too, Caroline. I thought about you while I was writing this. You labelled yourself a “pasta fanatic” after my last pasta recipe and I knew this one would “get ya!” This is a great dish and I just know you’ll love it!

  18. I agree with everyone, first photo looks like you can pick the peas out from the camera! Great shot! I’m so hungry right now, this post is not helping. I wish I had a big bowl to eat and past with anything is my go to meal. What can I say, I’m Italian and need my bread and pasta! Love the addition of proscuitto too! Seriously wish I had a bowl to eat now! LOL Have a great day!

    • Thanks. Lisa, and I’m with ya. Pasta is my go to meal, too. I can make a dish of pasta in less time than I can get a dinner delivered and certainly less than it would take me to pick one up. And when it’s as tasty as today’s recipe, I really can’t go wrong. Have a great week!

    • Thanks you. Now that you’ve mentioned it, I bet this would be great with broad beans. I hope I can remember to ask my Zia if she’s served it that way. I’d be willing to bet that she did years ago. It has that “feel’ of one of her dishes. :)

  19. Pingback: Pasta Paglia e Fieno – Straw and Hay Pasta Recipe « goodthingsfromitaly

  20. Pingback: Pasta Paglia e Fieno - Straw and Hay Pasta Recipe | La Cucina Italiana - De Italiaanse Keuken - The Italian Kitchen |

  21. Mmmm, that sounds so good! I love the flavor combinations (and the colors, too!). I remember shelling peas with my grandma – some of my favorite childhood memories. :)

  22. Bonjourno! Reading your posts from Italy is almost surreal. Guess what I did yesterday? I made homemade pasta from scratch with out a pasta machine. I can’t wait to try this dish upon my return home. Take Care, BAM

    • It sounds like you’re having a wonderful time, BAM, and I couldn’t be happier for you. Once you start making your own pasta, there’s really no turning back. You get hooked on the flavor. Welcome to the club! I hope the rest of your vacation is filled with more, happy surprises.

  23. Your freshly shelled peas jumped right out of the computer screen onto my keyboard! Great shot.
    And I will cheat and make this with some store-bought pasta. I should not confess this to a man who has never eaten pizza out of a box. I am sure my cheating with DeCecco makes you shudder.

    When school is out I will review the Wednesday posts and find a pasta to make, invite some guests. Document it in photographs and credit you for inspiration and instruction. Do you have any recommendations for the first attempt?
    Once I bought the inky black pasta for my sister (whose palate is more developed than mine) as a stocking stuffer. Forget it. The cat broke throughout the cellophane and chewed it all up.
    John, the rose is perfection. As a mother in frequent hyper-alert mode I worry about “bit of info making more sense later.”
    Thanks again for all the effusive and witty comments on the blogs. FR is on a jet to Dublin on Saturday. Don’t expect any great food posts but maybe some Guinness.

    • Thanks, Ruth, for always being so encouraging and appreciative. There’s nothing wrong with DeCecco pasta. I happen to love their pasta, although they do not have the selection that Barilla has. One of my favorite pastas is Angel Hair and DeCecco, for me, is the best. It makes perfect sense that a cat would go after authentic, black pasta. That stuff really is scented and a cat would go crazy around it.
      I’m a little confused over what you’re planning to do once school lets out. Are you going to make pasta from scratch or make a pasta dish? Either way, I’m here to help and will make sure that dinner is a memorable one — in a good way. ;)

  24. As it happens when we had our restaurant, it was Italian. Vino Vino to be exact. Our chef was from Maine, but was meant to cook Italian food. He loved this dish and I can understand why. Never cooked it while he was there but it looks so good, and the rose.

    • Hello, Sue. This was a favorite for my family and still ranks pretty high for some of us. It is just so easy to prepare and quick. Just right if, like my Mom, you’re trying to get dinner on the table in a rush. And for my tastes, she could have served this more than once a week and I’d never have complained. I hope you give it a try sometime.

  25. YAY!! Another real Italian dish to try! This one looks incredible John, like the rest of your Italian food arsenal. It sounds like something we’d both just love, especially now, in late spring.

    I think that’s why I adore real Italian cooking so much – it always uses the freshest ingredients, and they’re simple ingredients. I’m addicted :) I had no meals planned for the weekend, so guess what? :)

    Oh, I should tell you, Hubby has made your feta twice now. The first time it didn’t work so well, but this last batch? Magnificent! I think I mentioned to you before how much he loves feta, so this is a very big deal to him. He thanks you and bows to your excellence :) Me too!!

    • Thank you so much, Sarah. This is a very easy pasta to prepare and you’re going to love the final dish. Just remember to reserve asome pasta water to “fix” things if it goes dry.
      I’m so glad you guys tried the feta, didn’t give up after the 1st try, and had success. Is there something I could have better explained that would have prevented your DH from having a bad first batch? I’ll gladly amend the post. I know how disappointing it is to dump a batch of dairy and if I can prevent anyone from that fate, I’ll gladly do it.
      I’ve started work on the mozzarella post and am getting ready to make a batch. It’s a little tricky but, boy, that cheese is good freshly made. You’ll see … :)

      • Noooooo, your directions were perfect. Hubby has a tendency to, shall we say, rush through recipes? When he does that, he misses things. I helped with the second batch though, and it worked perfectly.

        Oh good! I’m excited to see the mozzarella post! We go through quite a bit of fresh mozzarella in this house :)

        • I’m glad you didn’t have a problem. I try to write these recipes for younger family members who don’t cook. I had Mom and now my Zia to question. They won’t have that luxury, so, these recipes have to pretty much stand on their own. Please don’t hesitate to tell me of any problems you may have with anything here. One day, some as-yet unborn Bartolini Clan member may thank you.

          Oh, you’re going to love the mozzarella!

  26. That’s a wonderful recipe, so enticing (see? I used the word you introduce me to ;) )
    It seems simple too, so it won’t be long before we try it at home.
    One question, the ingredient that adds color to the pasta is always added mixed with the eggs?

    • Giovanna, you make me laugh! Your English & writing skills are better than many who were born here. It amazes me that you write your posts in 2 languages every day.
      You do not need to add the coloring ingredient to the eggs. I do because I think it mixes with the flour better, creating a more even tint. If you think it’s best to do it differently, than by all means do so. No matter when you add the coloring, if at all, I think that you’re going to enjoy this dish.

  27. I love that pea shot of yours John! And ALL your pasta dishes make me drool. I’ve GOT to remember to wear a bib when I show up here! Thanks for another great post and a wonderful recipe!

    • (Laughing) Thank you, Spree. I’m going to relay your bib comment to my Zia. She’s sure to get a laugh from it. I can’t wait for you to return to your new kitchen so that you can get back to sharing your wonderful recipes with us. Yum!

  28. John, your first photo is outstanding…have you gotten a new lens? Your recipe is very similar to what I make except that you make your pasta fresh and I use dried fettucini. Great post.

    • Thank you, Karen. I just checked, Karen, and you’re right. Sorry I failed to remember it when I wrote this post. I just don’t think of this as pasta with prosciutto & peas. It’s “paglia e fieno.” Somewhere Dad is smiling. He always wanted us to speak more Italian. :)
      It’s not a new lens, Karen. I just have a point-and-shoot camera. It was a combination of good lighting — a rarity — and good luck. May both continue!

      • John, your whole family has to be so proud of you and smiling. I love what you are doing to continue the traditions of your family.

        Your photo is so good…I hope you always that kind of light to showcase your wonderful recipes.

  29. Oh… so this is exactly what I’ve been missing! What I love most about your recipes is, in fact, the creative and poetic language that Italians use to name their food. Even as yellow and green it’s so much more romantic in your language. This language is so inspiring, I’ve got to come up with something better when naming my own dishes! I just dug out a “shrubby” garden bed, ripped out the fabric (well, ok, my daughter’s boyfriend did all that) and planted some herbs. I think now, I’ve got to run out and pick up some seeds and will plant you some peas. I’ve got the perfect spot along the back and if I shipped them out, would you send me some of your pasta in exchange? Straw and Hay.. it just tickles that palate thinking about making this dish.. and of course the luscious cream and salty prosciutto just tempts all the more. It’s pouring rain here and I will have to make this on the weekend.. albeit with the sad frozen bag of peas in my freezer. But I’ve a hunch your pasta and these ingredients can overcome my Green Giant lackluster peas!!
    ps Ha! You’ve a red rose today and I’ve a white!! What would that pasta be called I wonder??

    • First off. It is so good to have you back again, Dolly … er Barb. :)
      I do give the Italians credit when it come to naming their pasta. The more names one learns the more interesting it becomes. I wish I could find my travel book from my last trip to Italy. I had written down a number of pasta dishes that we were served and I can only remember a few of them. I’ll find it one of these days!
      Don’t fret about using frozen peas! I make this dish all year-round and only in the Spring do I use fresh peas. I hope you do make it and enjoy it like my family does. You’re right. It’s the salty prosciutto, the cream, and the sweetness of the peas make this a great dish.
      That rose is the first of a few that I’ll be sharing in the weeks to come. There’s a “theme”, if you will, and I’ll have more to say about it as time goes by. :)

  30. This looks like a fabulous pasta dish to have in my arsenal. I’ve never been big on peas, but with a cheesy cream sauce and pancetta…I just might find myself enjoying them. It’s definitely worth a shot. I thought of you the other day. I stopped in our Caputo’s (the good one) and saw the baby artichokes! Incidentally it’s also where I found our green tomatoes. I love that store. in fact, heading back today for some more mussels. :)

    • THanks, Kristy. If peas aren;t your thing, then drop ‘em and use something that you & your family all like. The dish is all about the cream sauce, the prosciutto, and some vegetable or two. I, too, was at Caputo’s on Friday. I was walking by the fish counter, saw little clams, and bought some for my linguine Friday night. I just couldn’t resist. And, yes, I bought more artichokes! I think they see me parking my car and rush to get the small artichokes out, knowing that I’m going to buy some. :)

  31. Pingback: FEELING THE LOVE « Francine In Retirement

  32. Am a little late to reading/commenting as I am out of town with spotty internet, but I must say firstly that your images are just spectacular, John! That opening shot of the peas is so beautiful and professional looking. And your pasta looks terrific…love the gentle colors and proscuitto, cheese and cream with homemade “straw and hay”, what could be better tasting?

    • Oh, Betsy, you’ve touched upon a nerve. I think it’s ridiculous that the companies are upgrading to 4G — with talk of 5G — when parts of our country aren’t even at 2G yet! It was so frustrating when I was in Michigan over Memorial Day. Anyway …
      Thank you for leaving such a great comment. As you might have guessed, I eat quite a bit of pasta but this dish, ever since I was a boy, is one of my favorites. As you say, it’s all about the ingredients.

  33. This is another post that never made it to my email in box!! Good thing I was on wordpress and roaming around in the tab “Blogs I Follow”. Sheesh! I love the name of the dish and it doesn’t surprise me that the Italians had to name it something unique and exciting. Nothing wrong with that! I can make this dish gluten free too! I buy spinach pasta and regular brown rice pasta. The cheese and cream aspect will be a challenge though!

    When you were talking about shelling peas it brought back memories of sitting with my grandma and helping her shell peas and snapping the ends off of beans from her garden. Such good memories!

    The rose is gorgeous! Have a lovely day, John! ~ April

    • The mail box problems seems to be making the rounds. I cannot remember who it was but the suggestion is to unsubscribe the individual whose mail is ging AWOL and then re-subscribe. I hope it helps.
      I just finished shelling more peas that I purchased at the farmers market yesterday. I’m going to take advantage of them while I can.
      I’ve no idea how to make a DF cheese-cream sauce. It’s only a matter of time, I bet, before better ingredients are developed and things like DF cream sauces are not just possible but very tasty, too.

  34. Hi John,

    Sorry to be late coming to this post. For some reason my blog is failing to register your new posts…

    I don’t want to repeat all the superlatives that have already been quite rightly heaped upon by other readers but boy do you deserve them!! The photos are amazing and you are too modest-those took skill! The recipe is delicious though I of course would skip the meat part…for me the peas and pasta with the sauce would be wonderful…and the history and information so very interesting. I too then enjoyed the pea shelling memories of my childhood and finally contemplated your beautiful rose.

    What a magnificent post!!

    • Thank you for leaving such a nice comment! I’ve considered getting a new camera but, as these photos prove, it isn’t the camera as much as it is the lighting. To get these shots, I used the landing of my back porch steps in mid-day. That’ll work for the next few months but gets really problematic around November and near impossible come January.
      That’s the thing about these pasta dishes I’ve posted, you can easily skip the meat and still have a great dish. The most important thing is to use fresh ingredients, no matter what they happen to be.
      Sorry you’ve had problems receiving notifications of the posts. A while back someone posted that if you unsubscribe and then subscribe to the “missing” blog, the problem goes away. I hope that helps.
      Have a great week!

  35. Funny thing is that half the time I read one of your posts, I turn to the wife and ask “have you had this before.” Sometimes she says yes and sometime she say what the heck are you talking about because of my pronunciation! Regardless another delicious recipe she needs to make for me. :-)

    • I know exactly what you mean, Jed. My Zia is forever asking me to repeat anything that I say in Italian. I may be able to spell or identify a dish but I’ll be darned if I can say it!

    • Thanks, Christina. That rose is the first to bloom in my garden and just about the last to bloom in the fall. All season long, it has about a dozen roses in some stage of blooming. It really is something to see. And yes, now that I corrected my original comment, this pasta dish is a good one. I made it again just the other night.

    • Thanks, Michael. I’ve moved my “studio” (Ha!) out into the yard whenever possible to take advantage of the light. This too shall pass once the cold weather returns. :)

  36. Pingback: Inspired by Three of My Favorite Fellow Bloggers « Ruth E Hendricks Photography

    • Well, if you visit one of our households for any length of time, chances are you’ll be served paglia e fieno at least once. It is definitely a family favorite. :)

  37. Pingback: Hungarian Sweet Green Pea Soup with Dumplings — Zold Borsóleves « Kitcheninspirations

  38. John, one of my favorite pasta is fettuccine. And yours is not only homemade but superb!!
    I use to love to shell peas for my mom and grandmother; when I wouldn’t eat the peas as I shelled them!! I love this dish! Perfect : )

    • Thanks, Judy. This pasta dish is a favorite in my family and though we’re no longer under the same roof, this dish is prepared in a number of our homes every Spring. Well, in my house I make it all year ’round but that’s because I’m a pasta fanatic. :)

  39. You know, I’ve been making something similar to this (ham & peas with a ricotta-based sauce for years) but assumed it was something that came out of desperation a limited refrigerator supply. Of course there would be an Italian tradition with fresh ingredients! Now that I have the little pasta machine, I’m thinking of all the lovely Bartolini pastas I can make :)

    • Paglia e Fieno is about as traditional a pasta as you can get. It’s a Springtime dish and my family usually serves it at Easter. You can make it with frozen peas but, if you can get fresh, by all means do so. And making green pasta is not at all difficult. Add as much chopped spinach to the flour in your food processor as you wish. The more you add, the more color. You’ll impress your dinner guests, guaranteed!

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s