Thursday , 22 February 2018

Bacon, Caramelized Onion and Summer Squash Pasta


Quick rant (feel free to skip this part) – I have no intention of ever being a trader/financier/economic guru.  Who came up with the whole idea of options?  Seriously.  Long Call, Short Put, pricing options by figuring out the replicating portfolio and then enacting an option plan such as a protective put and how do I figure out the freaking payoff diagram again?

Ok thanks.  Rant over.

So yeah, my finance final is tonight and other than a trip to grab breakfast and another one to get an eraser and more pencil lead (if that tells you anything) I haven’t left my house since I got home from work Friday.  And probably wouldn’t leave my house at all until Wednesday night if it weren’t for the job interview tomorrow.

Luckily I got my husband to do the grocery shopping on his own for the first time since we’ve been together and much hilarity ensued.  As in, I received around six separate phone calls from him.

“Ok they don’t have 1.5 lb of turkey drumsticks, they only have 2.2 lb – what should I do?” Answer: Get the 1.3 lb turkey thigh.

“Where are the honey roasted peanuts?” Answer: In the snack aisle by the sodas.

“I don’t see romaine hearts, how do I tell if there’s 3 hearts in a bag when it’s all chopped up?” Answer: You’re looking at the wrong thing…yes I swear it’s there; they come 3 to a bag…fine, just get the prechopped mix if you can’t find it.

And so on and so on.  I was cracking up at the continued and repeated phone calls, considering the goal of him doing the shopping was so I would be able to focus on my studying.

Let me preface this by saying that I’m super grateful that he did that for me (plus I think it’s adorable of him…awww).  But ha!  He returned saying things like; I can’t believe that took me so long, why did that take so long, etc.  Maybe now he sees why I always drag him to the store with me.  It’s much quicker when there are two people attacking a grocery list.

Plus I kind of have the tendency to just browse.  Get me in a grocery or office supply store and I can look around forever.  If he’s not there to hurry me along I’ve literally spent over four hours just looking at various items, debating the merits of this can of diced tomatoes versus that one, you get the idea.

I wanted to make sure I had dinner ready when he got home (since he was tackling the groceries solo), plus at that point I really, really needed a break from studying. So this was definitely a throw together, what do I have left in my fridge and what can I do with it night.

Case in point: in order to get 8 oz of dried pasta (I usually figure 2 oz per serving) I ended up using 5 oz of penne, 1.7 oz of shells and 1.3 oz of orzo.  Bonus: I cleaned out my pantry a bit by using up all the little bits of pasta left in boxes, score!

While this isn’t the quickest meal since it takes time to cook the bacon, caramelize the onions, and so on; yay for procrastination in a useful form, it’s definitely super easy and ends up pretty tasty.

Bacon, Caramelized Onion and Summer Squash Pasta

Prep Time: 10 minutes

Cook Time: 50 minutes

Servings: 4

Serving Size: About 2 cups of pasta per serving

Bacon, Caramelized Onion and Summer Squash Pasta


  • 3 slices center cut bacon
  • 1 red onion, thinly sliced into half rings
  • Around 2 lbs assorted zucchini and yellow squash (you could definitely go with a little more if you wanted) – cut into a smaller dice
  • 4 cloves of garlic, minced
  • 8 oz dried pasta (go for a short pasta such as rotini or penne)
  • 2 -3 tsp Herbs de Provance or Italian seasoning
  • 1 - 2 tsp crushed red pepper
  • 1 tsp Spanish smoked paprika
  • ½ tsp brown sugar
  • Salt and pepper, to taste
  • 1/3 cup chicken stock
  • 3 oz herbed goat cheese, divided
  • Optional Garnish: Fresh minced basil (or as you can see from my picture I didn’t have fresh so I ended up sprinkling a bit of dried on)


  1. Boil water for pasta then cook according to manufacturer specifications, making sure to drain it 1 – 2 minutes before it reaches al dente.
  2. In a large skillet, over medium heat cook bacon until crispy. When done remove and drain on paper towels. Crumble when cool enough to handle. Pour off all but about 1 ½ tsp of bacon fat (I know, it’s hard to drain off the deliciousness...but do it anyway).
  3. Add red onion to bacon drippings in pan and sprinkle ½ tsp brown sugar over onion. Cook, stirring occasionally for twenty minutes until caramelized. You may need to reduce the heat a bit if it’s browning too quickly.
  4. Increase heat to medium high and add squash, garlic, Herbes de Provance, smoked paprika, crushed red pepper, and salt and pepper to taste. Cook over medium high heat for about ten minutes or until squash has softened.
  5. Add 1/3 cup of chicken stock to pan, bring to a boil then reduce heat to low. Add in crumbled bacon and 2 oz of goat cheese, tossing until the cheese has melted into a thin sauce and coated all of the vegetables.
  6. At this point you pasta is (hopefully) done or about to be. Make sure you pull it from the heat 1 – 2 minutes before it reaches al dente (yes I’m repeating myself to stress this step). After draining, throw it in the skillet with the vegetables and toss to get all of the pasta coated. Increase heat to medium and finish off the pasta in the sauce with the vegetables so that it absorbs more of the flavor.
  7. When pasta is done to your liking, divide among four bowls. Take remaining 1 oz of herbed goat cheese and crumble, tossing over the four bowls of pasta.

Yummy!  So you can’t really see it in the picture but the bacon is there.

Oh yes, it’s there.  And it’s delicious!

We both enjoyed the mix of garlic, goat cheese (we’re goat cheese fanatics) and vegetables (especially with the slight hint of heat from the crushed red pepper) but the smoky bacon really threw it over the top.

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  1. What a fantastic recipe! If my hubby did the shopping it would be the exact same! He hates to grocery shop and instead – he cleans the bathrooms. I LOVE to grocery shop, so I think I’m getting the better end of the bargain!
    Ann recently posted..Banana Vanilla Honey French ToastMy Profile

  2. Good luck on your final!! This looks like the perfect way to procrastinate! Love the caramelized onions with the bacon and the squash- three of my favorite flavors!!
    sarah recently posted..Summer, Cupcakes, and Things That MatterMy Profile

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