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Smoky bacon pasta with sticky chilli aubergine

Smoky bacon pasta with sticky chilli aubergine

A riff on a classic Amatriciana, this pasta is enriched with smoked lardons and pecorino, with added aubergines for good measure. The honey may sound unusual, but it does go deliciously well with pecorino, aubergines and a hint of chilli.

This recipe costs under £2 a portion when using store-cupboard ingredients you already have at home.

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4 out of 5 stars(5) Rate this recipe
HealthySource of protein2 of your 5 a day
  • Serves4
  • CourseMain meal
  • Prepare10 mins
  • Cook30 mins
  • Total time40 mins

Please note that while we take every care to ensure the product and recipe information displayed on our website is correct, in the event that a product is unavailable, alternatives may be displayed and/or a substitution may be given. This may affect the nutrition and allergen information, therefore if you have any allergy or intolerance, please ensure you have reviewed the product label to ensure it is suitable for you to consume.

Ingredients

  • 500g pack Essential Cherry Tomatoes
  • 200g pack Essential British Smoked Bacon Lardons
  • 1 Essential Aubergine, cut into bitesized pieces
  • 1 tsp olive oil, if needed
  • 2 clove/s garlic, finely chopped
  • 2 tbsp tomato purée
  • ¼ tsp chilli flakes, plus a pinch
  • 300g Essential Spaghetti
  • 1 tbsp clear honey
  • 4 tbsp Galbani Pecorino Romano, grated or shaved

Method

  1. Blend the tomatoes in a food processor or liquidiser until smooth. Set aside. Put the lardons into a large nonstick frying pan. Cook over a medium heat for 10 minutes, until golden and the fat has melted. Lift out to drain on kitchen paper. If there is any excess fat, spoon most of it away.

  2. Add the aubergine to the remaining fat in the pan. Season, turn up the heat a little, then cover and cook for 10 minutes until golden and tender. Press the aubergines occasionally as you stir to soften them. Tip out.

  3. Return ⅔ of the lardons to the pan, either with 1 tsp fat or using the olive oil. Add the garlic and soften for 30 seconds, then add the tomato purée and ¼ tsp chilli flakes. Pour in the blended tomatoes. Simmer for 5-8 minutes until reduced and richer.

  4. Meanwhile, cook the pasta according to pack instructions. Drain, reserving a cup of water, then tip the pasta into the sauce and toss over a low heat, gradually adding about 6 tbsp cooking water to loosen. In a small pan, warm the honey with a pinch of chilli, the remaining lardons and aubergine. Spoon over the plated pasta, then scatter with pecorino to serve.

Cook’s tip

If you’re avoiding dairy, try adding 1 tsp finely chopped rosemary with the garlic, and sprinkle a tiny bit more over the finished pasta, instead of using the cheese. If you’re making this for children, try adding a cooked, mashed carrot into the tomato sauce to up the veg count.

Nutritional

Typical values per serving when made using specific products in recipe

Energy

2,062kJ/ 491kcals

Fat

17g

Saturated Fat

6.4g

Carbohydrates

61g

Sugars

11g

Fibre

6.5g

Protein

21g

Salt

1.8g

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