CHILLI TOMATO AND MUSHROOM FETTUCINE
2 tbsp olive oil
1 large onion, chopped
2-4 garlic cloves, crushed
2 rashes bacon, trimmed and chopped
400g button mushrooms, quartered
4 tsp fresh thyme leaves
1 tsp dried chilli flakes
Salt and pepper to taste
2 x 400gm cans chopped tomatoes
4 tbsp single or pouring cream
Place the pasta in a saucepan of boiling salted water and cook for 10-12 minutes or until al dente. Drain and return the pasta to the saucepan to keep warm.
Heat a frying pan over high heat. Add the oil, onion, garlic, bacon and mushrooms and cook for 5 minutes or until the mushrooms are golden. Add the thyme, chilli and tomatoes and cook for a further 5 minutes. Add salt to taste. Stir in the cream to serve.
Serve as it is or with freshly grated parmesan cheese
The above was a recipe from Rozy on the taste.com.au forums. There is a forum there called Cook's Club, where once a fortnight, people take turns in posting challenge recipes for others to try, and we all compare notes. Rozy has three recipes for us to try this fortnight, this is the first one I used. First, my variations... since we only had Australian garlic, I only used 2 cloves, since Australian garlic is at least twice as strong as the regular sort you buy at the supermarket (and twice the price! But it's all my veg shop sells by the single bulb). I used 4 slices of short cut bacon, since that's all I buy, and it was fairly lean too. I didn't have fresh thyme, but I have dried, so I used 1 tsp of dried instead. And of course, being the hot 'n' spicy wimp that I am, we had no chilli in the house, and I thought it would be a waste to buy it for one recipe, so I just left that out altogether. I also used 500g of fettucine, because there are 5 of us (ok, so two are kidlets, but still) and also because that's how much there was in a packet of fettucine, and what would I do with 100g of uncooked fettucine, given our standard pasta of choice is spirals?
Once the tomatoes were in the pan, I melted some butter in another pan, threw some steaks in there on high heat, seasoned with a little Season All and a pinch of thyme, and plated them up with the pasta. Because, you know, there are some people out there (and here!) who think a meal is just a side dish unless there is some kind of meat with it. I'm pretty sure bacon in this quantity doesn't count either.
This was very easy to make, but I should have made my housemate buy chilli (since he will use it) because i found that after I added all that cream (ok, so I've used more in other recipes, but it felt like a lot, and it looked like a lot in the pan) it seemed a little bland to me. But everyone liked it, and I had enough to serve 3 adults, 2 kids, and have 2 adults serves leftover. It makes a LOT!
Now doesn't that look tasty?