Penne with Bacon & Roasted Cauliflower
The roasted cauliflower adds a depth of flavour and texture to this dish.
- Put a pot of salted water on to boil for the pasta.
- Wash and chop the chile finely; set aside.
- Heat the oil in your baking dish (see tips) over a medium flame on top the stove.
- Wash the cauliflower, chop it up into floret pieces, and zap it in the microwave for 4 minutes (or steam for 4 minutes) or until just tender. Drain, set aside.
- Start heating your oven to 175 C / 350 F / Gas Mark 4.
- When the cauliflower goes into the microwave, put in the frying pan the chopped-up bacon and chopped chile and fry for 4 to 5 minutes, just until the bacon appears to be starting to cook. Stir in the cauliflower pieces in and the dried basil, then pop in the oven and bake for 10 minutes.
- At the same time that you pop the cauliflower into the oven, pop the pasta in to cook.
- When the cauliflower has been in the oven for 10 minutes, remove it, stir in the tomato, and return to the oven for another 5 to 8 minutes, or until the cauliflower pieces have just started to brown.
- Meanwhile, the pasta will be ready to drain. Drain it, and return to its pot and cover to keep it warm while the cauliflower finishes.
- When the cauliflower is done, tip the cauliflower mixture into the pasta pot, toss the pasta and cauliflower together along with a glug or two of olive oil, and serve hot.
You'll need a dish / pan for this that is both stove-top safe and oven safe. You could use cast iron for this or a sturdy-bottom roasting dish. Use a mild pepper for this, or use 1/2 teaspoon of dried pepper flakes, or use a dash or two of Tabasco, or omit if you like.
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