Are you just like us who can’t go by without eating pasta at least thrice a month? Without even knowing what kind of pasta we’re going to cook, it’s mandatory that we have it served on our dining table thrice a month. Our favorite pasta dishes are lasagna (reserved for special occasions), alfredo, baked macaroni, spaghetti aglio e olio, and other olive oil-based pasta dishes.
It goes without saying that pasta has got to be one of our favorite meals to cook. We’ll give you our top reasons why we love pasta:
- There are different types of pasta to choose from.
- It’s a super versatile dish because you can make use of different ingredients.
- It’s filling even if you don’t eat a lot.
- Except for lasagna and other similar pasta recipes, it’s an easy and quick dish to cook.
This list is not exclusive so feel free to add more in the comments if you wish. 😉
As this post is obviously dedicated to our love for pasta, we are sharing with you today this simple and flavorful pasta recipe: Sun Dried Tomato and Basil Spaghetti with Bacon Bits. This dish is proof that you absolutely can eat gourmet food at home.
This olive oil-based spaghetti recipe has all the top reasons we enumerated earlier. Please spare us a few seconds to discuss why.
1. WE CHOOSE SPAGHETTI. For this recipe, we specifically used spaghetti because it’s our humble opinion that it’s the best choice for this olive oil-based pasta recipe.
2. VERSATILE AS VERSATILE CAN BE. We made use of a combination of three ingredients that you don’t usually encounter in ordinary pasta dishes, i.e. sun dried tomatoes, fresh basil, and bacon. This is not your usual go-to pasta recipe like carbonara and spaghetti bolognese, BUT it is one of the best pasta recipes we cook at home. That’s why we’re sharing it here! You need to have a taste of this to understand what we’re saying. Lol
3. YES, IT’S FILLING. So even without loading it up with toppings and sauce, we feel full after each meal.
4. MEAL PREP IN LESS THAN AN HOUR. This is in no way an exaggeration. If you’re not taking care of the kids or sending an email to your boss while cooking this recipe, you can cook this meal in less than an hour.
This is how we describe the taste of this recipe: The first flavor you’ll get once you take a bite of the spaghetti alone is mild but savory – courtesy of the seasoning: salt, black pepper, paprika, parmesan cheese and olive oil. Later on, as you take a bite of the other ingredients, flavors will burst in your mouth as the sweet-tart sun dried tomatoes and salty bacon intermingle. And every time you eat one of the basil leaves, it refreshes the taste buds. Simply put, everything is balanced in this dish. Nothing is too overpowering, which makes having seconds more inviting.
We will no longer keep you waiting because you’re probably hungry by now. So let’s go straight to the recipe!
WHAT YOU’LL NEED FOR THIS RECIPE
SUN DRIED TOMATOES – The star of the show. The sweetness and tartness of these preserved tomatoes is such a delight. It’s not overwhelming because there’s a good balance occurring in its flavor profile. Though be sure to drain the oil before adding them to the cooking pan.
FRESH BASIL LEAVES – Unfortunately, our good ol’ dried basil leaves won’t do the trick here. We strictly need fresh basil leaves for this recipe. Whole and removed from the stems.
BACON – Sliced into small pieces for even distribution and stronger flavor. We used country bacon, but you can choose any bacon you like.
SPAGHETTI – We love spaghetti for this recipe, but we’re not stopping you in case you prefer linguine. We don’t recommend fettuccine because it’s too wide for this recipe.
OLIVE OIL – We need a lot of olive oil to make this delicious. But of course, add according to taste.
SALT – 2 teaspoons of salt were used to season this pasta. Add according to taste.
GROUND BLACK PEPPER – Same rule as above. But if you’re wary of adding too much pepper, we used 1/2 teaspoon.
PAPRIKA – Ahh, paprika! This spice has done magic in many of our meal preps and this recipe is no exception.
GRATED PARMESAN CHEESE – Your widely available grated parmesan cheese stored in a plastic bottle with that typical green packaging is sufficient.
PARSLEY (optional) – For garnishing. It tastes yummy with the pasta, too.
- 400g spaghetti
- 250g bacon (cut into small pieces)
- 300g sun dried tomatoes (drained)
- 3 cups fresh basil leaves (whole and removed from the stems)
- 1 cup olive oil
- 2 tsps salt
- 1/2 tsp ground black pepper
- 1 1/4 tsps paprika
- 1 tbsp grated parmesan cheese
- chopped parsley leaves (optional) for ganishing
1. In a large wide pan, fry the bacon bits without any oil on medium low heat. The bacon will cook in its own fat.
2. When the bacon becomes crispy, remove from the pan and drain any excess fat by letting it cool down in a plate or container lined with paper towel.
3. Throw away the remaining bacon fat left in the pan. Once the pan is back on the stove, pour 1/3 cup of the olive oil. Adjust to low heat.
4. Add the sun dried tomatoes. In case you got large tomatoes, gently divide them into bite-sized pieces.
5. Add the fresh basil leaves, followed by salt, ground black pepper, and paprika. Stir them all together.
6. When the basil leaves start to wilt, add the cooked spaghetti. Mix them gently and evenly.
7. You may now add the bacon bits and grated parmesan cheese, each followed by mixing the ingredients together.
8. At this point, you can add more salt or the remaining olive oil according to taste. Garnish with chopped parsley leaves and serve.
By the way, we have something new for you! From now on, we will include a video for you to have an easier time cooking your meals while following our recipes. Watch the video below to see how we prepared this Sun Dried Tomato and Basil Spaghetti with Bacon Bits.
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HOW TO COOK SPAGHETTI
- Fill a large pot with water up to its half.
- Add 1/2 teaspoon of salt and 1 teaspoon of olive oil.
- Cover and bring to a boil.
- Once it starts to boil, put in the spaghetti.
- Constantly stir to prevent the spaghetti strands from sticking together. By doing so, you will also have a better observation of when it’s already cooked.
- The spaghetti is cooked when it’s firm when you bite it. It should not be difficult to chew.
WHAT’S A GOOD SUBSTITUTE FOR FRESH BASIL LEAVES
Fresh parsley, spinach, and oregano are good alternatives when you can’t get ahold of fresh basil leaves.
KITCHEN TOOLS THAT MAKE COOKING PASTA EASIER
- Tongs with silicone heads – to help you pick up the pasta and mix the ingredients together. Also, it’s heat-resistant.
- A strainer or colander with feet – to drain the cooked pasta without having the need to hold the strainer or colander.
HOW TO MIX THE SPAGHETTI WITH INGREDIENTS MORE EVENLY
Cut the whole bunch of spaghetti crosswise after putting them in the pan. This way you can pick them up with the tongs better and the ingredients won’t have trouble getting in between strands of spaghetti.
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