Even though it seems like it would be heavy and rich, this pasta stays light and fresh while still remaining very satisfying. There is just enough gorgonzola to add a velvety mouthfeel but not enough to overwhelm your palate.
Technique tip: Scoop the pasta from the water using a spider to keep that beautiful and importantpasta water.
Swap option: Bacon is just as delicious as the pancetta here. I use whatever is in my fridge.
- One 8.8-ounce package cavatelli pasta
- 1/2 pound pancetta, cut into 1/2-inch dice
- 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
- 2 shallots, peeled and chopped
- One 8-ounce container cherry tomatoes, halved
- 1/8 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1/4 pound gorgonzola dolce cheese
- One 5-ounce package baby spinach, roughly chopped
Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Cook the cavatelli 2 minutes less than the package directions. Drain well reserving 1½ cups of pasta water.
Meanwhile, add the pancetta and olive oil to a large skillet and warm over medium-high heat. Cook, stirring often with a wooden spoon, until the pancetta is crispy, about 8 minutes. Add the shallots and cook another minute until fragrant. Add the tomatoes and season with the salt. Cook, stirring often for about 4 minutes or until the tomatoes are beginning to soften. Add the pasta to the pan along with 1/2 cup of pasta water. Scatter the gorgonzola over the pasta and stir to combine. Continue to stir, adding pasta water as needed, until a light creamy sauce is formed. Add the spinach and toss to combine. Cook another minute until the spinach is just barely wilted. Serve hot.