MAKES FOUR SERVINGS
For the breadcrumbs:
3 tablespoons unsalted butter
For the pasta:
To make the breadcrumbs, melt the butter in a skillet over medium heat. Add the breadcrumbs and stir until they’re coated in the butter. Bring the heat to medium low and cook, stirring constantly, until the breadcrumbs start to brown, about 5 minutes. Continue to cook and stir until the breadcrumbs are dark golden brown. Turn off the heat, stir in the parmesan cheese and salt, and transfer to a plate or shallow bowl to cool.
Cook the bacon according to the package instructions. They should be more on the crispy side, but not dried out. Set aside to cool, then chop.
Bring a large pot of heavily salted water to a boil.
While the pasta water comes to a boil, in a large pot or Dutch oven bring the heavy cream and chicken stock to a simmer over medium high heat. Add the onion and garlic powders. As soon as this mixture begins to simmer, lower the heat. Simmer over medium low to medium heat for 10 minutes, stirring occasionally.
When the pasta water boils, add the pasta to it and cook for 5 minutes. Strain the pasta, reserving at least 1 cup of pasta water. Transfer the pasta and 1 cup of the reserved pasta water directly to the pot with the simmering cream mixture. Bring to a simmer, then lower the heat to medium low and cook, stirring regularly, for another five minutes, until the sauce has thickened, and the pasta is al dente. Stir in the peas, parmesan, and all but 1/2 cup of the bacon. Season to taste with salt and pepper.
Serve the penne topping with the breadcrumbs and the remaining bacon. This dish is best served immediately. However, if it dries out at all, stir in another splash of pasta water.
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