Bacon, Lettuce, and Tomato Bucatini with Garlic Crumbs

For the garlic bread crumbs:

1 clove garlic
1  c. French bread cubes
1 t. olive oil
salt to taste

for the pasta:

2 strips thick-sliced bacon, diced
1 c. grape tomatoes, halved
1/2 t. sugar
½ c. thinly sliced leeks

¼ c dry white wine
½ c, chicken broth
1 t. red wine vinegar
¼ t red pepper flakes
4 oz dry bucatini or spaghetti
1 c fresh spinach leaves
¼ t. minced fresh thyme

Bring a pot of salted water to a boil for the bucatini.

Mince garlic for the breadcrumbs in a food processor.  Ad cubed bread, and process until coarse.  Heat oil in  non-stick skillet over medium; add crumbs and toast until golden, 3-4 minutes, stirring often. Season with salt and set aside.

Sauté bacon for the pasta in a large nonstick skillet over medium heat.  Cook until crisp, then drain pieces on paper towel-lined plate.  Pour off all but 1 T. drippings.

Caramelize tomatoes and sugar in the drippings over medium heat.  Cook until tomatoes begin to brown, about 5 minutes.  Add leeks; sauté until wilted, 3 -4 minutes.

Deglaze skillet with wine; simmer until liquid is nearly evaporated.  Add the broth, vinegar, and pepper flakes.  Simmer until liquid is reduced by a third, about 5 minutes.

Cook bucatini in boiling water according to package directions.  Add spinach, thyme, and bacon pieces to sauce.  Transfer cooked pasta from cooking water to the skillet using tongs.  Toss to coat with sauce.  Season with salt, then divide pasta with reserve bacon pieces and bread crumbs before serving.

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