Romano Pepper and Herb Penne
Romano Pepper and Herb Penne
Course: Main

Crispy Parma ham, red peppers and fresh herbs is such a lovely flavour combination. Parma ham usually comes in packets of six to seven slices – use the whole packet. Swap the ham for thin rashers of streaky bacon, if you prefer.

Serves: 4
Cooks in: Cooking Time: 30 minutes
Difficulty: Easy


  • 275g (10oz) penne pasta
  • 6–7 slices Parma ham, snipped into small pieces
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 4 spring onions, chopped
  • 150g (5oz) roasted red peppers in oil (from a jar), drained and chopped 
  • 1 large garlic clove, crushed
  • 200g (7oz) full-fat crème fraîche
  • 1 × 30g packet of flat-leaf parsley, leaves roughly chopped
  • 1 × 30g packet of basil, leaves roughly chopped
  • 30g (1oz) Parmesan, finely grated


Cook the pasta in boiling salted water according to the packet instructions, then drain, reserving some of the cooking water.

Meanwhile, place a large frying pan over a high heat. Fry the Parma ham for a few minutes, stirring occasionally, until crispy.

Remove with a slotted spoon and set aside.

Add the oil to the pan, along with the spring onions, peppers and garlic and fry, stirring occasionally, for 2 minutes.

Add the crème fraîche and bring to the boil, then add the drained pasta with half the crispy ham, most of the herbs and some salt and pepper. Toss over the heat for a few minutes.

Add the cheese and a splash of the reserved cooking water if the sauce seems too thick, and sprinkle over the remaining crispy ham and herbs to serve.