Pasta with Spring Peas, Pea Shoots, and Pancetta

This is an easy-peasy weeknight treat--all you have to do is toss cooked pasta with spring peas, pea shoots (tomyao), pancetta, and loads of parmigiano reggiano.

There's nothing that dismays me more than a picky eater.

I've always been uncomfortable around picky eaters, especially adults, who turn up their noses at vegetables and so-called exotic cuisine, who would rather make hasty judgments before giving something a fair shot, and who are definitely missing out on the more exciting things life has to offer because of their unwillingness to explore.

I get along with Mr. Flintstone quite well because we are both adventurous and open-minded, especially when it comes to food. When we were still star-crossed young lovers, we've talked about instilling these values to our future progeny. After all, we don't want to be the type of parents who are forced to eat nothing but fast food while malling or travelling, simply because the tiny tots won't eat anything other than chicken nuggets or burgers!

Ever since my eldest has begun to venture into eating solid food, I have always tried my very best to provide my babies with nutritious home-cooked meals--without being too strict about candies and potato chips. What can I say, kids will be kids! If you tell them NOT to eat something, they will crave for it more!

But at the end of the day, I'm proud to say my kids are not afraid of trying out new food and new cuisines. I think it's also worth bragging that my kids love all sorts of fruits and vegetables, even if the only "vegetable" other kids their age eat is french fries!

I've mentioned before that the kids' nanny is somewhat strict. This is why the kids occasionally enjoy cereal and bacon for breakfast, but they also munch on vegetable frittata and stir-fried veggies with as much gusto. I don't ban commercial fruit juice in the house, but it's cool to know that the kids enjoy homemade fruit slushies & popsies even more.

Over time, the kids have developed their own quirky food preferences, with one kid absolutely nuts about chocolate, and another who would rather enjoy fresh fruits and mild, creamy cheese for dessert. Different strokes for different folks, I say! The golden rule in the house is to NEVER say no to something they have NEVER tried yet.

This month, Rustan's Supermarket is bringing back the Goodness Gang, whom my kids adore to bits! My kids and I went to the grocery and they helped me craft fresh and exciting recipes featuring their favorite fruits and vegetables, and in return, I promised I'd help them collect all 8 characters!

Filled to the gills with lycopene, Thomas the Trusted Tomato shines bright in this simple Tomato, Burrata, Basil Salad with Extra Virgin Olive Oil & Fleur de Sel.

Bursting with B complex vitamins, Alex the Action Apple is the star of this Green Apple, Roast Chicken, and Feta Cheese Salad with Green Goddess Dressing.

In dire need of antioxidants? Billy the Brilliant Blueberry brings tangy, fruity goodness in this Blueberry, Avocado, Roast Salmon, and Kesong Puti Salad with Chia Seeds.

Brimming with vitamin B, vitamin C, and potassium, Pippa the Playful Pepper spices things up in this drool-worthy dish: Roasted, Stuffed Yellow Bell Pepper with Picadillo con Queso.

A strong source of iron, calcium, and vitamin D, Max the Mighty Mushroom takes things a notch higher in this snazzy dish: Roasted, Stuffed Portobello Mushroom.

Spilling at the seams with vitamin C, Olivia the Outgoing Orange explodes with fruity goodness in this Orange, Grapefruit, and Beet Salad with Citrus-Mint Vinaigrette.

Lacking fiber and potassium in your diet? Fiona the Fantastic Fig teases the palate in this Caramellized Figs and Roast Duck Panizza with Rocket.

Popping with vitamins and antioxidants, Patrick the Powerful Pea knows how to get the party started in this Spring Pasta with Peas, Pea Shoots, Pancetta, and Pecorino!

With these in the menu, no kid or kid-at-heart can ever say no to fruits and veggies!


Penne or shell pasta, cooked according to package instructions
Snow peas, peas removed from pod
Pea shoots (tom yao), washed thoroughly (you may also use alfalfa)
4 tbsp garlic, finely minced
4 tbsp olive oil
Parmigiano Reggiano


1. Boil peas to desired doneness. Shock with ice water to stop cooking. Set aside.
2. Carefully saute garlic in olive oil over low heat. Garlic must remain pale and must not take on any color.
3. Toss pasta with garlic, olive oil, peas, pea shoots, and parmigiano reggiano
4. Serve!

Tags: vegetables

Easy 5-step recipes featuring the freshest and most exciting ingredients from Rustan's Supermarket.