While living in Southern California, one of Amy’s favorite Saturday morning rituals was to go to a local breakfast spot, Hugo’s, for one specific dish — The Pasta Papa. Fresh pasta scrambled with eggs, garlic, parsley, parmesan cheese, bacon, turkey sausage and scallions.
The beauty of this dish is that the eggs scramble with the cooked pasta to coat everything like a carbonara. Full of flavor, it warms you through and through, and leftovers are delicious for savory late night snacking.
She’s Southwesternized her own version by adding chile peppers, grated pepper cheese, cilantro, and hot sauce. This batch (pictured) was made with thick-cut seared cubed ham steak and roasted red bell peppers. Another great thing about this recipe is that you can use all sorts of proteins and veggies that are already in your fridge to add to the mix: cooked crumbled chorizo sausage, chopped zucchini or yellow squash, chopped sun dried tomatoes, grated carrots, crumbled cotija cheese, topped with fresh cilantro … it’s a wonderful comfort food mish-mash that makes you feel good!
SOUTHWEST PASTA PAPA BREAKFAST
Thin spaghetti noodles, see box directions for serving amount for 4
2 pats butter
2 large red bell peppers, green peppers or poblanos
1 1/2 Tblsp olive oil
2 scallions including the green stems, chopped
1 clove garlic, minced
3 egg whites and 2 yolks, beaten
1/4 cup grated pepper cheese
1 large thick ham steak, seared and cubed
cooked bacon crumbles, browned crumbled turkey sausage, and/or cooked crumbled chorizo if desired
1 small bunch fresh flat leaf parsley or cilantro, fine chopped
1/4 cup grated parmesan
bottle of your favorite hot sauce
Break the long spaghettis into thirds and cook according to package directions to al dente, as it will continue to cook later with the eggs. Drain, place back in the cooking pot, add 2 pats butter and stir to coat. Set aside.
While the pasta is boiling, roast the chiles to char on all sides, then place in a plastic baggie to steam for 25 minutes. Transfer to a cutting board and remove the skins with your hands. Cut off the stems, then cut open to remove the seeds (and the seed pod if a poblano). Lay the chile meat fillet flat and cut into 1/2-inch pieces. Set aside. (here is a previous post with these steps on prepping chiles)
In a large saute pan, drizzle with olive oil and bring to medium high heat. Cook the scallions for 4 minutes, add the garlic and cook 1 minute more. Add the cooked pasta and beaten eggs. Continually stir as the eggs cook and coat the pasta. When you see that they are scrambled yellow-white and no longer runny, add the pepper cheese, chiles, ham steak (and other pre-cooked meats and veggies if desired) and cook 1 to 2 more minutes to heat everything through.
Plate immediately, topped with parsley or cilantro, parmesan or cotija cheese. Splash with your favorite hot sauce.
xo Amy & Mr.D