This is a winner. A little girl (aged 3) recently came to stay and when it came to teatime she wasn’t in the mood for any nonsense. I was fairly confident she would like this as my children adore it, even my son who is absolutely not the first to request pasta, ever.
When the time came to serve though, I realised I had forgotten the vagaries of young children and must admit, felt a brief tremor of nerves. Hurrah, it was a huge success and she polished off three helpings much to the panic of my daughter who was eyeing the reducing seconds in the pan with alarm.
So offer this with confidence and not only to children, I make no secret of loving it and am often to be caught sneaking a spoonful or two from the pan before it disappears.
Orzo with Bacon, Tomato and Cream Sauce
Orzo is a rice shaped pasta we have a particular fondness for but use any small shape you like. I keep those little rectangular packs of pancetta in the fridge and along with some small packs of passata in the larder this becomes an almost store cupboard supper.
1 teaspoon olive oil
100g pancetta, pack sizes vary and a little more won’t hurt if that is what you have
1 clove garlic, finely chopped
2 tablespoons cream
A few sprigs of parsley, chopped
Cook the orzo according to the packet instructions, probably around 11 minutes. Meanwhile put the pancetta into a large frying pan with a teaspoon of olive oil and cook until well coloured and crispy in places. Add the garlic and cook for a minute before adding the passata, stir and cook for a few minutes before adding the cream. Drain the pasta retaining a little of the cooking water. Put the pasta into the sauce, stir until combined adding a little of the cooking water if you need it to loosen the sauce. Grate over some parmesan, add the chopped parsley and serve with more parmesan to hand. Serves two adults or three children.