Sometimes, just sometimes, you need a pasta fix. Maybe you haven’t touched a carb in three weeks, maybe this is your last hurrah before you’re off the stuff for good, or maybe you’re hardcore Italian/Sicilian and cutting pasta or bread out of your diet isn’t up for fucking discussion. We get it. But there’s so much more to life than lasagna or spaghetti with meatballs etc. Your pasta should be as chic and amazing as you are, so mix it up a little, betch.
The combination of bacon or pancetta with spicy chilies and fresh rosemary hits the spot for your herby need, your craving for spice, and your unhealthy obsession with bacon. We aren’t judging, yet.
– ½ package of bacon, strips cut into 1-inch pieces
– 2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
– 3 sprigs of fresh rosemary, leaves stripped from the stem and leaves finely chopped
– 1 tsp red chili flakes
– 4 garlic cloves, finely chopped
– 3 cups cubed butternut squash
– 2 cups rigatoni pasta, uncooked
– Grated parmesan to serve
Cook the bacon in a biggish sauté pan until crisp but obviously not burned. Remove from the pan with a slotted spoon and set on a paper-towel lined plate to drain. Keep the fat in the pan, turn the heat down to about medium, then add the olive oil, rosemary, chili flakes, garlic, and squash. Cover and cook for about 20 minutes or until the squash is tender. Make sure you’re paying attention to this and stirring otherwise your garlic will burn. Season with a bit of salt and pepper, smash (yes, smash) a few of the squash pieces, then turn off the heat, and set aside.
Meanwhile, make your pasta. I shouldn’t have to explain this part. Get it together. When it’s time to drain the pasta, keep about 1 cup of the cooking water. Add about ½ cup of the water to the squash mixture, let it bubble, then (if it’s saucy enough for you), drop in your cooked pasta. Toss then top with the bacon, some parmesan, and serve. Shit, even sprinkle some more fresh rosemary over the top if you’re extra fancy.