Pasta with Corn, Burrata, Pancetta, and Chilies

  • 1/2 pound dried or fresh wide noodles, like pappardelle or fettuccine
  • 1/2 cup panko (Japanese bread crumbs)
  • 1/2 cup fresh basil leaves, plus more to garnish
  • 1/2 teaspoon sea salt, plus more to season
  • Extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1/4 pound pancetta
  • 2 ears of corn, kernels removed
  • 2 dried red chilies, cut into small pieces
  • 1/2 cup Parmigiana Reggiano, shredded
  • 1/4 pound burrata

Cook the pasta in a large pot of boiling salted water until al dente, stirring often. Drain, reserving a 1/2 cup of the cooking liquid.

While the pasta is cooking, prepare the breadcrumbs and sauce. For the breadcrumbs, place the panko, basil, and salt in a food processor and grind until small. Drizzle the breadcrumbs with 1 tablespoon of olive oil and pulse until well incorporated.

Using a non-stick skillet, toast the breadcrumbs until lightly browned and dry. Set aside.

For the sauce, heat up a large skillet and add 2 tablespoons of olive oil. Add the pancetta and cook for 2 minutes, or until slightly caramelized. Add the corn and chilies to the skillet and cook on medium heat for 5-7 minutes, stirring occasionally. Deglaze the pan with some of the cooking liquid if necessary.

Finally, turn off the heat and add the pasta, cheese, and cooking liquid to the skillet. Combine well using tongs. Top with a generous dusting of breadcrumbs and several hunks of the burrata. Garnish with torn basil leaves.

Serves 2.

Recipe adapted from Local Lemons and Serious Eats