by Susan Hanna

This New York Times version of the Italian classic dish Bucatini all’Amatriciana is delicious. Bucatini is a thick, spaghetti-like pasta with a hole running through the centre. You can also use spaghetti. Cook the pancetta (I used bacon) and set aside. Soften onions, add tomatoes, season and simmer for 20 minutes. Meanwhile, cook the pasta. Combine the sauces, pasta and meat and heat through. Remove from heat and add the cheese.

Serves 4-6.

Avoiding Additives and Preservatives

Look for pancetta, prosciutto or bacon that is additive-free. I used Blue Menu tomatoes. Make sure the cheese does not contain colour. For more recipes using all-natural ingredients, visit Eye For a Recipe.

Ingredients:

  • ½  pound (227 g) of unsliced pancetta or prosciutto
  • 3  tablespoons (45 ml) olive oil
  • 1  medium red onion, peeled and coarsely chopped
  • 1 ½  pounds (680 g) canned tomatoes
  • ½  teaspoon (2.5 ml) hot red-pepper flakes
  •  Salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 1  pound (454 g) dried bucatini or spaghetti
  • ½  cup (125 ml) freshly grated pecorino, romano or Parmesan cheese

Preparation:

  1. Cut the pancetta or prosciutto into chunks less than one-half inch (1.25-cm) thick. Place in a saucepan with the olive oil and fry over low heat for 15 minutes, until all the fat has been rendered out and the meat is very crisp. Remove the meat from the pan with a slotted spoon and set aside.
  2. Add the onion to the pan and sauté over medium heat for five minutes.
  3. Drain the tomatoes, finely chop them and add to the onion in the pan. Season with red-pepper flakes and salt and pepper to taste and simmer 20 minutes, stirring occasionally.
  4. Bring a large pot of cold water to a boil and add salt to taste. Add the pasta and cook until al dente, about 9 to 12 minutes, depending on the brand. Drain well.
  5. Transfer the cooked sauce to a large heavy skillet over medium-high heat. Add the pasta and the reserved meat and cook, stirring, for 30 seconds. Remove the skillet from the heat, add the cheese and mix very well. Transfer the pasta to a warm platter and serve immediately.

From the New York Times