This is about as un-italian and non-gourmet as you get when it comes to pasta dishes but when the paths are very icy and your neighbour cant even manage to get his car out of the drive (nevermind down the road) its good to use up what you have rather than venture to the supermarket. I also find that theres something about a baked dinner that is so much more satisfying when its freezing outside. Its always worth having some pasta, a tin of tomatoes and a few rashers in the house for this!
Ingredients (should serve 2 hungry people after a long trek home through the snow):
- 180g dried pasta such as penne or shells but tortellini will work equally well
- 1 tin plum tomatoes (I always go with whole tomatoes and stick a knife in to chop them in the tin as the chopped ones often seem quite scrappy)
- 1 heaped teaspoon of sugar
- salt, pepper
- a pinch of dried chilli flakes
- 2 dessertspoons cream (optional)
- 1 tablespoon of olive oil
- 3 rashers
- 2 breakfast sausages
- some chopped thyme and rosemary if you have it
Preheat your oven to 200C or 180 if you have a fan oven.
Boil up a big pot of water for your pasta and add some salt. Put the pasta on to boil.
Chop the bacon and push the sausagemeat out of the sausages into little balls. Heat some olive oil in a pan and add the bacon and sausagemeat. Fry for a few minutes and then add the tin of tomatoes. Immediately add the sugar, some salt, pepper, chilli, cream and chopped herbs if you have them. Simmer away until the pasta is cooked
Drain the pasta and put in a gratin dish. Pour the sauce over and grate a thin (or heavy) covering of parmesan over before putting in the oven.
Wash your dishes and keep an eye on the oven, it shouldnt take any longer than 10-15 minutes for the cheese to be melty, crispy and the sauce to be bubbly. Take out and eat.