This bacon sundried tomato pasta with spinach and cream is quick to make, full of delicious flavors that all will enjoy. Comforting and just that bit different, it’s a great easy meal.
It has been one busy weekend as I have been away at a conference (read more about it and tips for your first blogging conference). It was lots of fun with so much to take in, but I’m glad to be home and give my boys lots of big soppy hugs, and have a few simpler meals. Don’t get me wrong, the food at the conference was great, fantastic even at many meals, but having a few more elaborate meals sometimes makes me crave simpler meals to balance things out. Not to mention the fact I’m tired and want to spend time with my kids rather than cooking. This bacon sundried tomato pasta with spinach and cream is just the sort of meal for times like these, so it seemed the perfect time to share it with you.
You might get the sense I’d been holding back on sharing this recipe, which is sort of true. The thing is I couldn’t help think that for one, it’s not necessarily that original and two, it fuels the accusation that I have a bacon obsession. But then I started thinking that neither of those are really a bad thing, in my mind, if dinner is tasty. And they are definitely not a bad thing if it’s tasty, quick and relatively healthy, not to mention inexpensive. So, I decided this bacon sundried tomato pasta recipe had to be shared after all as it fits exactly in that space.
Of course typically for me this dish came about largely due to what we had in the house one day. I had bought sundried tomatoes a while before with something else in mind that didn’t happen, at least not with the sundried tomatoes. Then recently I discovered that our local chicken shop (yes, it sells very little more than chicken, but it’s great) also sells a really good local smoked bacon, as I’d used in my beet, blue cheese and bacon pizza. I had a little I needed to either use or freeze, so I figured in a sauce may be a good use. We’d had gnocchi in a pretty tasty creamy sundried tomato sauce while we were away on a trip a while back and that became my starting point. Some spinach for color, a different texture and healthy(ish) factor, and the dish was about there.
How its made
As I said right at the beginning, one of the main beauties of this dish is it is really quick and easy to prepare. In fact you can have everything for the sauce made while the pasta is cooking then you just tip the pasta in, stir and serve. All you need to do is soak the sundried tomatoes in boiling water while you cook the bacon, onion and garlic. Drain off some of the fat, add some cream and a little pasta water, the sliced soaked tomatoes and some chopped spinach. Cook a couple minutes and that’s it.
It’s relatively simple, but the flavors are delicious and it’s got a lovely mix of comforting creaminess, depth of flavor from the sundried tomatoes but that bit of freshness from the spinach. Plus yummy bacon-ness, if that’s a word. But either way, I’m sure you know what I mean.
This bacon sundried tomato pasta with spinach and cream is the kind of dish that is great for those nights when you haven’t quite figured out what to eat, but don’t want whatever your default one or two typical dishes might be. It may not be every person’s pantry meal, but there’s a good chance you have most ingredients around (or could do, for next time!). It’s quick and easy, but just different enough to feel like you put in a bit of effort, and works in any season as well. In short, it’s the sort of dish you don’t really need to find an excuse to make and you’ll not regret making, so go ahead and give it a try.
Pasta with bacon, sundried tomatoes, spinach and cream
- 12 oz pasta 340g, approx - suggest something that will hold the sauce like cavatelli or orecchiette
- 4 slices smoked bacon approx, or 5 if thin/small
- 1/2 onion
- 2 cloves garlic or 2 if large
- 1 1/2 oz sundried tomatoes 42g, approx 12 pieces
- 2 oz spinach 55g
- 1/2 cup heavy cream 120ml, double cream
- 1/4 cup water 60ml/10g approx, from the pasta cooking
- Parmesan to serve
- Unless you have quick cooking pasta, set your pasta to cook while you make the sauce. Once it has cooked, drain but reserve the pasta water and cover the pasta to keep warm.
- Soak the sundried tomatoes in boiling water while you cook everything else (unless they are in oil in which case skip this step and just slice).
- Cut the bacon in relatively thin slices. Warm a large skillet/frying pan or saute pan over a medium-heat and add the bacon, stirring now and then to avoid it sticking too much and so it cooks on both sides.
- While it's cooking, dice the onion and garlic relatively finely. Slice the sundried tomatoes and roughly chop the spinach.
- Add the onion and garlic to the bacon once it is starting to brown, around 5 mins.
- Once the onion has softened, another 5 min or so, add the cream, the little bit of pasta water, sliced tomatoes and spinach.
- Cook for another 2-3 minutes until the spinach wilts down then add the pasta and stir through well so the pasta is well covered with the sauce. Add a little more pasta water if needed.
- Serve, topped with some freshly grated parmesan.