Lemon Penne with Ham and Escarole

Lemon Penne with Ham and Escarole
  • Cook Time
  • Prep Time
  • 4Servings


  • 1 pound penne pasta
  • 1 head escarole (about 1 pound), sliced crosswise
  • 1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
  • 5 ounces ham steak, coarsely chopped
  • 1 clove garlic, finely chopped
  • 1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper
  • 3 large eggs
  • Grated peel and juice of 1 lemon
  • 1/2 cup grated parmesan cheese
  • Salt and pepper


In a large pot of boiling, salted water, cook the pasta until al dente. Stir in the escarole and drain, reserving 1 cup pasta cooking water; return the pasta and escarole to the pot.

Meanwhile, in a medium skillet, heat the olive oil over medium-low heat. Add the ham, garlic and crushed red pepper and cook, stirring occasionally, for 5 minutes.

In a medium bowl, beat together the eggs, lemon peel, lemon juice and half of the cheese. Whisk in 1/2 cup reserved pasta water. Stir the egg mixture into the pasta and cook, stirring, over low heat, until the cheese is melted and the mixture is creamy, 2 to 3 minutes. Stir in the ham mixture and the remaining 1/2 cup reserved pasta water; season with salt and pepper. Top with the remaining cheese.