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Pasta with walnut paste and pancetta

  • 10 minutes
  • 12 minutes
  • Serves 4
Pasta with walnut paste and pancetta

Toasted walnuts and smoky bacon or pancetta make a great sauce for an easy pasta meal.


  • 1 cup walnut pieces
  • 1 teaspoon minced fresh garlic
  • 1 green chilli, deseeded (optional)
  • ½ cup grated parmesan cheese
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 150 grams sliced pancetta or bacon, diced (see Cook’s Tip)
  • 2-4 tablespoons very finely chopped parsley
  • 400-500 grams pasta shapes


  1. Toast the walnuts in a 180°C oven for 10 minutes or until lightly golden. Cool well.
  2. In a food processor put the walnuts, garlic and chilli and process until finely chopped. With the motor running, gradually pour the olive oil down the feed tube to form a smooth paste. Pulse in the cheese and season with salt and pepper.
  3. Cook the pancetta or bacon in a frying pan until crisp . Set aside.
  4. Cook the pasta in boiling salted water for 10-12 minutes until al-dente. Drain well and return to the pan. Toss through the walnut paste, pancetta or bacon and parsley. Serve immediately.

Cooks Tips

Pancetta is a special cured bacon from the belly of the pig and it is now pretty much available in all good supermarkets. Bacon is a good alternative.

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