BLT PASTA

SERVES: 4

Passage Maker - - Galley -

1 pack­age (12 oz.) ba­con, sliced into ½-inch pieces 2½ cups chicken broth 1 (14.5 oz.) can diced toma­toes 8 oz. un­cooked penne pasta (about 2½ cups) ¼ tsp black pep­per 1 bag (5 oz.) fresh baby spinach 1 cup grape or cherry toma­toes, halved (op­tional) ½ cup shred­ded Parme­san cheese Chopped fresh basil or pars­ley leaves (op­tional)

In a four-quart Dutch oven, cook the ba­con un­til nearly crisp. Us­ing a slot­ted spoon, trans­fer the ba­con to a plate lined with sev­eral lay­ers of pa­per tow­els and set aside. Pour off the ex­cess ba­con fat but do not wipe the pan clean. In the same pan over high heat, bring 2 cups of chicken broth, canned toma­toes, pasta, and black pep­per to a boil. Re­duce the heat to medium. Sim­mer un­cov­ered 11 to 14 min­utes, stir­ring oc­ca­sion­ally and adding more broth as needed, un­til pasta is al dente and most of the liq­uid is ab­sorbed. Re­duce the heat to medium-low and grad­u­ally add spinach. Stir con­stantly un­til the spinach be­gins to wilt. Re­move from heat. Stir in cherry toma­toes and ba­con. Top with Parme­san cheese and basil or pars­ley leaves, if de­sired.

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