Orrechiette with Caramelized Onions, Sugar Snap Peas, and Ricotta CheeseBon Appétit | June 2009

by Maria Helm Sinskey

(photo by: Gail Albert Halaban)

One 16-ounce container of ricotta is enough for this recipe and leftovers.

Yield: Makes 4 servings
2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
4 cups (packed) chopped onions
1 8-ounce package trimmed sugar snap peas, cut into 1/2-inch pieces
1 8-ounce package orecchiette (little ear-shaped pasta) or pasta shells
1/2 cup whole-milk ricotta cheese
1/4 cup torn fresh basil leaves
1 1/2 teaspoons finely grated lemon peel

Heat oil in large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Add onions. Sauté until onions are pale golden, about 5 minutes. Reduce heat to medium; sauté onions until tender and deep golden, about 15 minutes longer. Transfer 3/4 cup sautéed onions to small bowl. Add peas to onions in skillet. Sauté until peas are crisp-tender, about 3 minutes. Remove skillet from heat.

Cook pasta in large pot of boiling salted water until just tender but still firm to bite. Drain pasta, reserving 1 cup cooking liquid.

Add pasta and 1/2 cup cooking liquid to onion mixture; stir over medium-high heat 30 seconds. Mix in ricotta, basil, and lemon peel, adding more cooking liquid to moisten as needed. Season with salt and pepper.