There comes a time in life when you need to eat bacon. Not all the time. Certainly not every day. But bacon calls to us, whispering in the wind at times. The thought of it invokes the smell of it. The smell of it and the sound of the sizzling, greasy pan is so peculiarly enticing it cannot be resisted. Breakfast sandwiches. Omelets. On pizza. Sprinkled on a baked potato with sour cream. And pasta. Bacon and pasta are one of the ultimate culinary love affairs. And orecchiette pasta with leeks and bacon is a slightly indulgent treat that must not be missed.
Small Ingredient List with Big Flavors
For this recipe, we're working with a small number of ingredients that will satisfy your comfort food cravings and then some. If you're craving carbs, which seems to happen once it gets chilly outside, this is the perfect dish for your next cozy night of chilling out and watching Netflix.
Here's What You Need to Make Orecchiette Pasta with Leeks and Bacon:
- orecchiette pasta
- pasta water
- shaker parmesan cheese
- olive oil, butter, salt and pepper for cooking and seasoning
- white wine, optional
- fresh grated parmesan, optional garnish
- fresh chopped parsley, optional garnish
Easy Steps for Making Bacon, Leeks & Pasta:
- First things first, cook the pound of bacon and get that out of the way. I didn't show cooking the bacon in the video because that's boring.
- Heat your pot of salted water to cook the pasta.
- Slice the white and light green section of the leeks into rounds and soak in water to clean.
- Chop the cooled bacon.
- Finely dice the garlic.
- Cook the leeks in one pan while the pasta cooks in another, they should both be done around the same time. SET ASIDE YOUR PASTA WATER BEFORE DRAINING THE PASTA.
- Transfer drained pasta to a bowl with olive oil, pasta water, cheese, bacon, leeks. Toss to coat. Add more hot tap water if you want it creamier, but not extra pasta water because that is salted - you don't want to over-salt this.
- Serve immediately. Top with optional fresh chopped parsley and fresh parmesan cheese.
An Easy Meal for Feeding Four to Six People
As many of you know, I love cooking with leftovers in mind. So, if you are two, four or six people this meal has got you covered. If you're feeding six people with this, plan on a side salad, veggies, or some crusty bread. For four people, these will be hefty portions so if you've got big eaters - this will be a winner.
If you are fewer than four this will also be great because you can pack the leftovers for your lunches. You don't need to spend your hard-earned money on expensive take-out food. When cooking, I often try to take care of my immediate needs, and also my future needs. If you can get into the habit of doing this, you will save money in the long run.
Orecchiette Pasta Pieces are Like Tiny Bowls of Food
One of the best parts about orecchiette pasta is they look like miniature bowls. The kind of tiny bowls you'd find in a dollhouse. And what do we use bowls for? Food! 🙂 So after you assemble the pasta, and toss all those awesome ingredients together - something magical happens.
Each bite of orecchiette contains a mouthful of presents. The little "bowls" fill with the cheese, bacon and leeks. And every bite is different. It's my favorite part about using this particular pasta. There's little treats in each bite that burst just a little as you eat them. And if you're a weird little foodie like me: you will totally appreciate that sensation.
Oh! You Want More Pasta Ideas? I Gotcha Covered:
- Creamy Chicken, Bacon Pasta (no butter, no cream) - so yeah, more bacon
- Swiss Chard Pasta with Lemony Bread Crumbs & Bacon Bits - tired of bacon yet?
- Chicken & Broccoli Penne Pasta w/Garlic White Wine Sauce
- The Ultimate Spaghetti Lasagna
- Dan Dan Noodles (Dandanmian)
- Pan Seared Sea Scallops w/Basil Brown Butter, Asparagus & Farfalle
- Pesto Pasta w/Olives, Shiitake Mushrooms & Artichokes
- Gorgonzola Rigatoni w/Sausage & Basil