|Tomato and (almost) bacon pasta|
200gm thickly sliced smoked ham
2 roma tomatoes
1 regular old ordinary tomato
1 punnet of cherry tomatoes
1 cup (ish) of white wine
4 cloves of garlic, crushed
A handful of fresh basil, sliced
Chilli to taste
Salt and pepper to taste
Slice the ham and chuck it in a large flying pan with a lug of olive oil and all of the garlic. You can make it less garlicky if you want, but garlic is good for you! Fry it up until you get some tasty smells going, then add the wine and simmer it while you put the pasta on to cook and chop up the tomatoes. I love, love, love the egg noodle pasta by San Remo, it is the closest to real pasta that you can get in a packet and keep in the cupboard. It's a little more expensive than regular packet pasta but it is worth it.
Chop the regular and roma tomatoes into 8 little wedges and cut the cherry tomatoes in half. Add the regular and romas to the frying pan and stir it all up. Let it bubble away until the tomatoes have softened up then add the chilli to the pan and taste before you add salt and cracked pepper. The tomatoes will be quite sweet, so salt is important at this stage. Get a potato masher and mush up about half the sauce quite roughly, this will help to thicken it up (thanks for that tip Jamie Oliver!).
Once your pasta is almost cooked, drain it thoroughly and tip it in to the frying pan along with the cherry tomatoes and basil. Use the tongs to toss it through really well so that the pasta is still cooking in the juices from the sauce and the cherry tomatoes warm through. I can't eat butter, but if I could I would have added a little dollop at this point.
Voila! Serve with a sprig of basil on top and some grated parmesan cheese. Amazing.