• Yield: Serves 4

  • Time: 9 minutes cooking

I was rummaging through my pantry and fridge one evening, trying to come up with an accompaniment for the pork chops I was cooking. This dish fit the bill, with creamy beans, salty pancetta, and bright color from the spinach. A winning combination on the fly!

Laura in the Kitchen Laura in the Kitchen
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil

  • 4 ounces pancetta or smoky bacon, cut into 1/2-inch dice

  • 3 garlic cloves, minced

  • 1 (28-ounce) can cannellini beans, rinsed and drained

  • 6 cups baby spinach

  • 1/4 teaspoon salt

  • Freshly ground black pepper

1. Put a large (approximately 10-inch) skillet over medium heat. Add the oil and let it get hot. Add the pancetta and cook until crispy, about 5 minutes. Add the garlic and cook for 30 seconds longer. Add the beans and cook for another 2 minutes.

2. Add the spinach and salt, season lightly with pepper, and cook until the spinach wilts, about 2 minutes, adding a tablespoon or two of water, if needed, to help the spinach along. Serve immediately.

Reprinted from Laura in the Kitchen: Favorite Italian American Recipes Made Easy. Copyright © 2015 by Laura Vitale. Photos by Lucy Schaffer. Published by Clarkson Potter, an imprint of Penguin Random House, LLC.