Pasta… a weakness of mine. The week barely starts and I am already thinking about what kind of pasta I am going to make on the weekend. Sometimes I feel like something special like a lasagna, sometimes simple like basil pesto, and sometimes I want something in between. That’s when this cheesy bacon, pea and tomato pasta bake hits the spot!
The first time I had this pasta bake or one like it, was at my aunt Pina’s house. It was crazy yummy… like have another bowl even though you are too full kind of yummy! Once you’ve tasted something like that, you will forever want more. Then my sister Serena got the recipe and would make it for us every now and then – BONUS! Thanks, Serena 🙂
I made it once before when I still lived in South Africa, but haven’t made it or tried to recreate it in quite a while. The other day I was thinking about pasta and about trying something I haven’t made in a while, and BAM – I remembered! The memory was of Serena’s 18th Birthday, where we had this pasta bake for dinner before going out to celebrate. I can remember it so clearly! A great dinner and an epic party to follow.
So with that in mind, I HAD to make it! It is really easy to make might I add and the simple ingredients work magic together. It does need a bit of time to cook, but the end result, that mouthful of cheesy-bacony pasta, is well worth the wait!
SIDE NOTE: You can add as much or as little cheese as you would like – I personally prefer lots of cheese hehe. Also, feel free to swop the cheese for a flavour/type you prefer. If you are completely against peas, then leave them out and add more bacon. I have not tried it with a different vegetable, so if you do, let me know how it turns out! 🙂 ENJOY!
Cheesy bacon, pea and tomato pasta bake
- 500 g Pasta (penne)
- 800 g Tinned peeled tomatoes, blitzed
- 1 Large onion, diced
- 250 g Bacon, diced
- 2 cups Frozen peas
- 250 ml Fresh cream
- 1 tsp Cayenne pepper
- 1 – 2 cups Grated Emmental cheese
- 1/2 cup Grated Parmesan
- 2 tbls Olive oil
salt and pepper to taste
In a medium-sized pot, heat the olive oil. When the oil is warm, add in the onion and cook it at a medium temperature until it starts to go translucent (not brown).
Add in the bacon and cook until the bacon has started to brown.
Add in the blitzed tomatoes and stir. Season with some salt, pepper and the cayenne pepper.
Allow it to cook for 30 min. Then add in the peas and cream and cook for 10 more min.
Preheat the oven to 180 degrees Celcius.
In a large pot, bring water to the boil for the pasta. Add in salt, and cook the pasta until it has just begun to soften (just before al dente).
Mix the sauce and pasta together. add in the parmesan and mix again.
Place into an oven dish and cover with the Emmental cheese. Cover with foil and allow to cook for 30 min.
Remove the foil and grill the pasta bake until the cheese is slightly golden.