Thursday, July 17, 2008

Bacon and Spinach Pasta

I love making a basic tomato sauce with canned tomatoes, onions, garlic and oregano; it's easy and tastes better than the murky taste of jarred sauce. There was a time when I kept tomatoes and pasta stocked in the pantry for those days when I didn't want to have to think about what to make for dinner. Those days have faded, or rather, I put an abrupt stop to them when I started noticing that I was consuming way too many carbs for someone who has to will and then drag themselves to the gym for a 30 minute run. Nowadays, when I do make pasta, I try to do something different and not so dependent on tomatoes to stretch my horizons. Enter bacon and spinach.

Many Italian recipes I see use pancetta, but bacon works just as well for me and costs less in most cases. I was looking for a pasta dish that would be filling, but not coma-inducing: this recipe fit the bill nicely. The bacon tasted wonderful (I used Niman Ranch bacon that may or may not have contributed to the flavor) and the baby spinach wilted quickly and cut the bacon's fatty intensity. The spinach helps especially in ignoring the fact that the sauce, so to speak, is mostly bacon fat (but in a good way!).

Pairs well with: Con Air
This pasta is the kind of meal where you lounge on the couch and eat leisurely, which calls for a movie that requires very little processing or who-dun-its.This Nicolas Cage starrer from the Bruckheimer catalog is one of the best action films to be spawned during the '90s and is perfect for comfort meal dishes. I conjecture it's got the best dialogue-per-minute stat that will have you laughing heartily. The absolute best part, though, is John Malkovich as Cyrus the Virus who says things like, "my own proclivities are well-known and often-lamented facts of penal lore."


Anonymous said...

I also LOVE pasta! Have you tried the Barilla brand Piccolini? Mini fusilli, mini penne, and (I can't find) mini wheels. Very cute, and they fit on a fork so nicely.

Marie said...

Hi, Tess! No, I haven't tried Barilla's Piccolini pasta, but I just looked them up and they look quite cute. I think they'd be especially fitting for a festive occasion!