Pâtes Rouges et Vertes

Noodles with Ham and Herbs

The texture and flavor of fresh herbs, good ham, and olive oil complement the subtle taste of the noodles. This is a beautiful, lively dish made in a few minutes. Don’t ever attempt it with dried herbs.


  • ½ cup olive oil
  • cup chopped Virginia ham, country ham, or prosciutto
  • 2 large garlic cloves, finely minced
  • 1 cup finely chopped basil, mint, chives, thyme, or parsley (or in whatever amount you like)
  • salt
  • freshly ground pepper
  • Pâtes aux Oeufs or good commercial noodles


Heat the olive oil in a heavy-bottomed pan and add the ham, garlic, and herbs. Cook, stirring, for 3 minutes over a medium flame.

Meanwhile, cook the pasta and drain it. Pour in a warm shallow dish and spoon the ham-and-herb mixture over the noodles. Sprinkle with pepper and taste before adding any salt. Toss lightly with two forks and serve.