Speaking of no brainers, compiling the list for my last post reminded me of one I haven’t talked about before – spaghetti all’amitriciana. It has five ingredients, it’s ready in the time it takes to cook the pasta, and it includes bacon. Win-win-win.
- Put on a large pot of water to boil for the pasta.
- Chop 8 rashers of bacon and put in skillet over medium-low heat. Cook until browned and crispy, stirring frequently.
- Chop 1 medium red onion and add to the skillet. Continue to stir the mixture frequently as the onion softens and browns.
- Add 1 jar (700 ml/28 oz) or equivalent of tomato passata to skillet and stir to combine with bacon and onion
- Once the water is boiling, salt generously and add 500 g/1 lb spaghetti or bucatini. Stir pasta and allow to return to a boil.
- While pasta is cooking, grate a good-sized heap of pecorino romano cheese (~120 g/4 oz/1 cup) into a bowl; also keep an eye on the sauce, stirring from time to time.
- Cook pasta 8-10 minutes until al dente. Drain, reserving about 120 ml/4 oz/.5 cup cooking water.
- Return pasta to hot pasta pot, then add sauce. (Most recipes suggest adding the pasta to the skillet, but I can’t do it that way without making a huge mess. Using the big pasta pot works much better for me.)
- Toss pasta and sauce to combine, adding generous amounts of grated cheese as you go. Add pasta water as necessary to help bring everything together.
- Taste and add salt and freshly ground black pepper if desired.
- Serve immediately, topped with more grated cheese.