Penne Pasta with Grape Tomatoes, Bacon and Mozzarella Cheese
Serves 4 to 6
This is a quick, easy and delicious Italian-inspired pasta recipe that is also quite healthy, especially if you use whole wheat pasta and part-skim mozzarella cheese. I really like it with the bacon, but it can be omitted for an equally tasty vegetarian presentation.
- 1 pound penne or similar pasta, regular or whole wheat
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 large onion, finely chopped
- 1 pint grape or cherry tomatoes, halved
- 4 slices bacon, browned, drained and broken into small pieces
- 1/4 cup chopped fresh basil
- Salt and pepper to taste
- 3/4 cup grated mozzarella cheese (can use part-skim)
- Freshly grated Parmesan or Romano cheese
Cook the pasta according to package directions for al dente.
Meanwhile, heat the olive oil in a large sauté pan or skillet over medium-high heat. Add the onions and sauté until softened, about 5 minutes. Add the tomatoes and sauté just until they are softened. Add the bacon bits, basil, salt and pepper. When the pasta is cooked, drain it, reserving a little of the cooking liquid. Add the pasta to the sauce with enough reserved liquid to bring everything together. Add the mozzarella cheese and toss well. Cover and heat just until the cheese is melted. Serve immediately, passing the Parmesan or Romano separately.