- 3 slices firm white sandwich bread
- 3 tablespoons olive oil
- 6 oz sliced pancetta, finely chopped
- 1 small red onion, finely chopped
- 2 large garlic cloves, finely chopped
- 1 teaspoon finely chopped fresh rosemary, or to taste
- 1/4 cup dry white wine
- 1/2 cup chicken broth
- 3/4 lb firm-ripe fresh figs, trimmed and quartered lengthwise
- 2 tablespoons finely chopped fresh parsley
- 2 teaspoons fresh lemon juice, or to taste
- 3/4 lb dried egg fettuccine
- Accompaniment: freshly grated parmesan
Tear bread into pieces and pulse in a blender or food processor until reduced to coarse crumbs.
Heat 2 tablespoons oil in a deep 12-inch heavy skillet over moderate heat until hot but not smoking, then cook bread crumbs with salt and pepper to taste, stirring constantly, until golden brown and crisp, about 5 minutes. Transfer to a plate to cool.
Heat remaining tablespoon oil in cleaned skillet over moderately high heat until hot but not smoking, then cook pancetta, stirring, until golden brown and crisp. Transfer with a slotted spoon to paper towels to drain. Add onion to skillet and cook over moderate heat, stirring, until softened, about 4 minutes. Add garlic and rosemary and cook, stirring, 1 minute. Stir in wine and boil, stirring occasionally, until liquid is reduced to about 1 tablespoon. Remove from heat and stir in broth, figs, parsley, half of pancetta, and lemon juice.
Cook fettuccine in a large pot of boiling salted water until al dente. Reserve 1/2 cup cooking water, then drain pasta in a colander.
Add fettuccine to fig mixture with 1/4 cup reserved cooking water and salt and pepper to taste. Heat over low heat, tossing gently and adding more cooking water if mixture becomes dry, until just heated through.
Serve pasta topped with bread crumbs and remaining pancetta.
Yield: 4 servings