This one’s another quick, go-to weeknight dinner. So simple and so yummy! I know it doesn’t look like much but I had to force myself not to eat half the pan myself. Instead of penne I used alphabet pasta in hopes it would entice my 3 year old to eat it. No dice. But I loved it! I also made it even simpler, and probably a little healthier by using precooked bacon. I removed it while I was cooking the onion and garlic, then added it again when I added the tomatoes. It took maybe 35 minutes from start to finish. What more do you need? Thanks Chef Michael Smith 🙂
Penne with Tomato Bacon Sauce
8 slices bacon, chopped
1 onion, finely chopped
8 cloves garlic, thinly sliced
1x 28 ounce can crushed tomatoes
1 tablespoon fresh thyme, rosemary or oregano
a sprinkle or two sea salt and freshly grated pepper
a 1 pound box penne pasta
Toss the bacon into a large saucepan over medium-high heat. Add a splash of water. Cook until the water evaporates and the bacon begins to brown. Continue stirring, lowering the heat a notch, until the bacon is crispy and brown. Drain away most (or some) of its fat, leaving enough behind to sauté the vegetables.
Add the onion and garlic and cook until they soften and begin to caramelize. Pour in the tomatoes, rinsing out the can with a splash of water and adding that too. Sprinkle in the herb of your choice and season with salt and pepper. Simmer for 20 minutes or so.
Cook penne in lots of boiling salted water. Toss with the sauce and enjoy!
Variation: You can use any type of pastas and type of canned tomatoes for this sauce. If you choose whole tomatoes, purée them before you add them to the sauce so the bacon can stay chunky. For a decadent treat and a richer flavour, you can leave all of the bacon fat in the pot. If you don’t have any fresh herbs, 1 teaspoon of dried oregano, rosemary or thyme will work well too.