Pasta Piselli

January 30, 2013

Test Kitchen-Approved

Author Notes: I first had this when I lived in Italy. I was invited to a friend's house for lunch and this soup was served as a first course. (Lunch is a big deal in Italy with multiple courses.) I watched my friend's grandmother make this soup as it took her just a few minutes and a handful of ingredients: chicken stock or broth, homemade (or dried) pasta, peas, egg, and grated Pecorino Romano cheese. Note: You can use Parmesan cheese instead of Romano, or mix them. sdebrango

Food52 Review: WHO: Sdebrango currently lives in Brooklyn, NY, and comes from a large Italian family that loves to cook.
WHAT: An easy-peasy Italian pasta that tastes like spring.
HOW: Cook peas and fresh pasta in chicken broth, then add in an egg and a hefty serving of Pecorino Romano cheese to bind it all together in a blanket of cheesy goodness.
WHY WE LOVE IT: This soup's depth of flavor belies its short ingredient list and quick cooking time to make it the perfect weeknight meal, courtesy of your fridge. The earthy peas compliment the full-flavored, velvety broth, brightened by a pinch (or two) of lemon zest—we just might make it again for dinner tonight.
The Editors

Serves: 2 to 4


  • 32 ounces (4 cups) chicken broth or stock
  • 1 cup fresh or frozen peas
  • 1/2 pound fresh pasta (I used linguine but capellini or spaghetti works just as well. If you don't have fresh, dried works great, also.)
  • 1 large egg, beaten
  • 1/2 cup grated Pecorino Romano, plus some to serve (Parmesan also works.)
  • Salt and pepper, to taste
  • Pinch of lemon zest (optional)
In This Recipe


  1. If using fresh pasta, bring the broth or stock to a boil in a large saucepan, add the peas, and cook for 3 minutes. Add the fresh pasta and cook for about 3 minutes. If using dried pasta, add the pasta into the broth before the peas. Cook the pasta for 3 minutes, then add the peas and cook for an additional 5 minutes.
  2. In a small bowl, beat the egg then add the grated cheese and combine. Remove pot from the heat and pour the egg mixture in slowly, while continuing to stir the pasta to coat. Add salt and pepper to taste, and a pinch of lemon zest if you like. Serve with more cheese grated on top.

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Reviews (49) Questions (0)

49 Reviews

Kristi Y. July 19, 2018
This turned out so good! It only took around ten minutes to make and I found the soup/sauce to be similar to carbonara which I loved :) will definitely make this again!
Kaite April 16, 2018
Lovely! Super simple recipe with amazing results. I'm so in love with it that I plan on making it for the second time this week. I didn't have lemon on hand but really can see how that would taste perfect with the dish. Perhaps even a quick squeeze of lemon juice over the top when serving to brighten it up.
Bear December 10, 2017
This has become one of "go-to" recipes when I can't think what to cook and the fridge is looking a bit bare... Thank you so much!
Mike S. June 14, 2017
I love this recipe! I have a question though: both times I've made it, rather than being a bit soupy, it becomes a big sticky ole mess -- which is still delicious! Am I doing something wrong or is that the correct consistency?
Mike S. June 15, 2017
Thank you! I might even consider adding a bit more stock!
Connie February 24, 2016
Great! Do you recommend a certain kind of bread (hopefully not many calories)? And, thank you for your quick reply!!
Connie February 24, 2016
I love to chicken in a pasta dish. Would it be okay to add to your recipe?
Transcendancing September 16, 2015
I enjoyed this, and will definitely make it again, but it's not my favourite simple pasta recipe - the splitting of the egg in the broth was slightly unappealing, but the flavour was all there - very tasty :)
hotsauce May 16, 2015
This is dangerously easy for how delicious it is. Maybe I did things wrong but the lemon zest was slightly too much for me- I have decided that the juice of a lemon added with the egg is just perfect. Love how adaptable this is as well. I love adding kale and a little bit of white wine, but imagine mushrooms or asparagus would be as well! Thanks for the amazing recipe.
charliesofia May 13, 2015
When I made this, I found it enjoyable though very subtle in its flavours. But when I came home hungry the following evening and ate it straight out of the fridge, it was heaven! I would happily serve it to guests as a cold dish in summer - would be the perfect start to a warm weather dinner party. And you could make it the night before! Will definitely be making again and again. Simple and delicious, hot or cold. Thank you!
zaini April 23, 2015
Love this recipe. It's so quick and simple. I don't make pastas often but this I had to try. I added a little hotsauce though since we Indians love spicy food :)
beejay45 April 16, 2015
Congrats on the win!<br /><br />This seems like an excellent way to use up leftover pasta, something I usually have in the fridge. And all ingredients I like, too. Maybe tomorrow with angel hair. ;) Thanks!
boulangere April 15, 2015
Salt and pepper are freebies<br />
Smaug April 15, 2015
I count eight ingredients.
Margaret G. April 14, 2015
Made this last night -- instead of a pot, I made it in a deep frying pan and made a sort of crust on top with the egg and cheese mixture. This was a super fast and easy recipe -- thanks!
Trena H. April 11, 2015
My mouth was watering as I was reading this recipe. I've been traveling and eating my way through Southeast Asia for the past six months and while I love the food I dearly miss Italian flavors and pasta. Thank you for giving me a simple and delicious recipe with ingredients I can source from Asia.
boulangere April 10, 2015
I was one of the lucky souls to test this recipe, and even as I tenderly stirred in the egg and cheese, I began to feel that it was destined to be a finalist. The kiss of lemon sealed the deal. Not only did it rightly turn up in the finals, but I also suspect that it will become one of those all-time classics. Besides, how can anyone resist a backstory that begins, "I first had this when I lived in Italy." Both the story and the dish itself leave one begging for more.
Selma |. April 10, 2015
Suzanne, congratulations on being a finalist!! This sounds like just delicious - makes a nice and lighter change from risotto which is what I usually make with the chicken broth...
Congratulations! The dish looks amazing!
Kukla April 9, 2015
Congratulations on being a finalist Suzanne!
Madhuja April 9, 2015
Congratulations, Suzanne! This is just the recipe for my insanely hectic lifestyle right now!