Bacon pasta with capers, tomato and spinach, the squid ink spaghetti brings a massive sense of drama to a quick and delicious pasta dinner.
After 10 minutes to prep, this dish takes around 12-13 minutes to cook and it tastes divine!
Squid Ink Spaghetti with Bacon
Simple pasta recipes lie at the heart of many a cooks repertoire and I am no different.
This recipe differentiates itself with the use of squid in pasta, it is glorious in terms of its looks, taste and mouth feel.
Flavour wise it has a lightly salty and almost ‘oceanic’ or ‘ozone’ flavour, but for me it’s the texture that screams through. It is beautifully silky whilst maintaining a great al dente bite.
As the pasta is so special it would be a crime to drown it in a sauce. As a result, this recipe runs with a dressing of olive oil flavoured by bacon, capers, tomato and spinach.
It is a picture of restraint and is made to allow the bacon and the pasta to be the star of the show!
Frequently Asked Questions?
Do I have to use squid ink pasta?
No, this dish is just as delicious with regular old spaghetti, but if you can get some give it a try!
I use it in a few recipes here so no need to worry about having leftover pasta in the cupboard. You could try my prawn pasta with squid ink spaghetti or squid ink spaghetti with pepperoni and peas.
Do I really need to remove the skin and seeds from the tomatoes?
No to the first, although it does refine the dish. However, you definitely need to remove the seeds to prevent the dish from becoming wet and claggy.
Can I use strips or rasher of bacon rather than lardons?
Yes, no problem at all although it will not be quite so satisfying without big chunks of bacon.
Do I need to add the capers?
The capers are in the recipe to provide some slightly tart notes and for me they are perfect. You could omit them and play with some lemon juice!
If you are worried about not using them up and having a jar in the fridge, don’t worry, I use them a lot.
I have recipes as diverse as pork ragu with capers and pan-fried skate wings in a caper sauce alongside many others. Just type capers into the search box at the top of the page!
Like most of my pasta dishes, this bacon pasta recipe is designed to be a light one-bowl meal.
That does not mean that I do not sneak a little something extra on the side!
I only recommend specific brands of equipment if I think that they make a material difference to a recipe. If you have any questions feel free to ask them in the comments section below the recipe.
- Saucepan for boiling pasta, I usually use a 2.4 litre (2.5 quart) pan.
- 28cm or 11″ frying pan.
- Weighing scales and or measuring cups and spoons.
- Chopping board.
- Sharp kitchen knife.
- Colander or sieve
This bacon pasta recipe may look all sorts of fancy and dramatic, however, it is gloriously simple and all of that drama comes from the use of squid ink pasta, but this delicious 20-minute meal is easy to make!
- 200g (7 oz) Squid Ink Spaghetti
- 1 Clove Garlic
- 3 Anchovy Fillets
- 150g (⅔ Cup) Bacon Lardons
- 2 Medium (200g Total) Tomatoes
- 50g (¼ Cup + 1 Tbsp) Capers
- 3 Tbsp Olive Oil
- 100g (3½ Cups) Baby Spinach Leaves
- Salt for Boiling Pasta
- ¼-½ Tsp Black Pepper
- Fresh Basil Leaves for Dressing
- Bring a large pan of salted water to a boil. One tablespoon of salt for 4 litres of water is a good start!
- Peel the garlic and dice it as finely as you can.
- Roughly chop the anchovy fillets.
- Roughly chop the capers.
- Cut a cross into the skin at the base of the tomatoes and when the water is boiling drop them in for 30 seconds. Transfer them to a bowl of ice cold water, allow them to sit for 2 minutes and then peel, deseed and cut into 5mm dice.
- Drop your pasta into the boiling water and cook as per the instructions on the pack removing 90 seconds from the cooking time.
- Heat a frying pan (28cm or 11") over a medium-high heat and when hot add the olive oil.
- Add the garlic and anchovies and cook for 60 seconds.
- Then throw in the bacon and cook until golden, this should be pretty much when the pasta is ready to be drained.
- Pick any tough stalks from the spinach.
- Drain the pasta reserving a little (75ml or ⅓ cup) of the cooking water and add the pasta to the garlic, bacon, and anchovies.
- Add the spinach, capers and tomatoes along with the freshly ground black pepper.
- Throw in the spinach with 2-3 tablespoons of the pasta water and add a lid for 60 seconds then toss until the spinach wilts. If you need more pasta water to create a silky coating after you have wilted the spinach, go right ahead.
- Dress with fresh basil leaves and serve.
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 724Total Fat: 48gSaturated Fat: 12gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 34gCholesterol: 79mgSodium: 9476mgCarbohydrates: 35gFiber: 5gSugar: 8gProtein: 39g
Calorific details are provided by a third-party application and are to be used as indicative figures only.