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Pasta Bake with Free Range Streaky Bacon

Pasta Bake with Free Range Streaky Bacon

This yummy pasta bake is ideal for a crowd of hungry kids or adults and is fantastic for lunch box leftovers!

Prep Time: 30 minutes
Cook Time: 30 minutes
Yield: Serves 8

Pasta Bake with Free Range Streaky Bacon
Pasta Bake with Free Range Streaky Bacon

Ingredients:
500g pack large pasta e.g. Rigatoni (I used Zitone #19)
1/4 cup olive oil
1 large white onion medium dice
4 garlic cloves finely chopped
250g Streaky Bacon roughly chopped
1 carrot peeled and finely diced
1 eggplant peeled and roughly chopped into dice
red pepper diced
1 tbsp capers (optional)
15 each Kalamata olives (optional)
1 tsp each oregano, rosemary, and thyme
2x 400g cans of chopped Italian tomatoes in a thick sauce
1 cup shaved parmesan
A handful of chopped Italian parsley
Olive oil
Cracked pepper and sea salt

PROCESS
Preheat oven to 180C In a large deep fry pan or heavy-based pot over medium heat adds the olive oil. Add the onion and cook for 5 mins, now add the bacon and cook for a further 5-7 mins. Add the garlic, carrot, eggplant, red peppers and remaining olive oil and sauté for 8-10 mins until the eggplant becomes tender.

To this add the oregano, rosemary, and thyme and cook for 3 mins. Add the chopped tomatoes and allow the sauce to simmer gently for 10 mins or so do not allow it to reduce too much] until the vegetables become just tender. Season well and set aside somewhere warm.

Cook your pasta al dente to the packets instructions usually 8 mins. Drain the pasta and then drizzle liberally with olive oil to stop it from sticking. Grease a large 25-30cm baking dish with butter and spread 4 of the sauce evenly over the bottom of the dish. Add a layer of pasta and then a light sprinkling of shaved parmesan, repeating this until the final layer. The final layer should end pasta then parmesan then sauce and then a final sprinkling of parmesan. Bake in the oven for 20-25 mins.

To serve sprinkle the top of the pasta bake with parsley. Serve alongside a fresh green salad and crusty garlic bread.

Smriti Kumar

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