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Whole Wheat Rigatoni with Bacon

Whole Wheat Rigatoni with Bacon


  • Salt

  • 1 pound whole wheat rigatoni

  • 3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil (EVOO)

  • 1/3 pound thick-cut bacon, chopped

  • 3 fresh or dried bay leaves

  • 1 large onion, quartered and sliced

  • Freshly ground pepper

  • 1/2 cup chicken broth or dry white wine

  • One can crushed tomatoes (28 ounces), such as San Marzano

  • Flat leaf parsley, finely chopped (a generous handful)

  • Freshly grated Pecorino Romano cheese, to pass around the table


Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Salt the water, add the pasta and cook until al dente. Drain, reserving a ladle of the pasta cooking water.

While the pasta cooks, heat a large, deep skillet over medium heat. Add the EVOO, 3 turns of the pan, and the bacon and cook until the bacon renders fat and crisps at the edges. Add the bay leaves and onion and season with a little salt and a healthy dose of pepper. Cook until the onion is tender, about 10 minutes. Stir in the broth and cook until reduced by half, about 1 minute. Stir in the tomatoes, bring to a boil, then simmer to let the flavors combine.

Add the reserved pasta cooking water, the pasta and parsley to the sauce and toss. Transfer the rigatoni to a serving platter, discard the bay leaves and pass grated cheese around the table.