Sunday, November 1, 2009

Smoky Tomato-Bacon Pasta

Normally, I don't complain about cooking meals- I love doing so, it's a stress reliever, and I enjoy trying new recipes. However, it's also really nice to have a good meal that is cooked by someone else, especially in the comfort of your own home. I feel particularly lucky because if I don't feel like cooking, my DB will take the initiative to cook for me- no complaining whatsoever. He just tells me to relax, watch TV, and he'll let me know when the meal is ready... and he still insists on cleaning up and doing the dishes.



Well, today was one of those days. I asked him if he wouldn't mind cooking a late lunch, and he replied with an "of course!" and a smile. I had picked this recipe out awhile back, and off he went to the kitchen to begin. This recipe was from Paula Deen's cookbook. I had some leftover cream cheese from this recipe, so this recipe worked well.
We loved the smoky crumbled bacon mixed in with creamy pasta and tomatoes! A small change we'll do next time would be to add the bacon at the very end- we wanted to taste the crispiness of bacon, and felt it would enhance this dish. Also, I would decrease the amount of reserved bacon fat to half the recommended recipe (2 Tbsp)- I think it would still taste great! I'm placing our changes in the recipe below. An easy lunch that we both enjoyed- Thanks D :)

Ingredients:
1/2-lb bacon (about 10 slices) (... or do what we did- cooked up all the bacon and ate the remaining cooked slices...)
1 large yellow onion, chopped
28-oz can diced tomatoes, undrained
Salt & Pepper
4-oz (1/2 of 8-oz package) cream cheese
1-lb uncooked rigatoni (We used rotini pasta)

Directions:
1. In a large skillet, cook the bacon until crisp and brown. Transfer it to a paper towel-lined plate. Pour off all but 2 Tbsp fat from the skillet.
2. Add the onion and cook over medium heat, stirring occasionally, until softened- 5-7 minutes.
3. Stir in the diced tomatoes, and season with salt & pepper.
4. Simmer, stirring occasionally, until thick and chunky, about 10 minutes.
5. Meanwhile, in a large pot of boiling water, cook the pasta according to package directions. Drain and transfer to a large bowl.
6. When the tomato mixture has simmered for 10 minutes, stir in cream cheese until melted.
7. Toss the creamy tomato mixture with the cooked pasta and serve immediately.



The finished results!


Source: Paula Deen Family Cookbook

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