Lemon, Bacon and Corn Pasta from Donna Hay Magazine, Summer 2012

Lemon, Bacon and Corn Pasta

I have a picture on the bookshelf behind me. It’s of Hubby smiling his wonderful smile; blue eyes all crinkled up. It’s hard to get a shot like that out of him. Like most of us, when you ask him to smile for the camera, something  that looks more like a grimace appears.

This was a special photo though. We were standing in the middle of St. Mark’s Square in Venice, Italy.  There were pigeons strutting all around us, people strolling arm in arm and the pure spectacularness of Venice saturating the very air we breathed.

Dog gone if that man wasn’t going to give me a real smile. So, I told him if he didn’t I’d do something very unladylike, publicly. It made him laugh. And I snapped the picture.

That’s one of the memories of our time in Italy that always comes to mind when I eat pasta. It beats the one of me using the wrong adapter on my hair dryer and blowing out the electricity in our entire hotel.  Let’s just say I didn’t air dried my hair for the rest of our time overseas. Oops.

I think it’s safe to say that we only really embraced pasta fully as a result of our Italy trip. Every dish we had was so delicious (well, except one, but that was Hubby and who knew that he’s not a pesto fan).

When I see a pasta recipe in a magazine, it’s almost impossible for me not to make it. So, making this for Hubby and me today was a small walk down memory lane.

The Process

Cooked bacon, boiled pasta and corn, sauteed garlic. Throw that and lemon juice, creme fraiche, salt and pepper in a pot and you’ve got lunch.

Unfortunately, the beautiful basil plants that were so generously given to me (thanks again, Chris!), were put in the ground on an 80 degree day only to have the temperatures plummet to 30 two nights later. They didn’t make it and I just won’t go buy the packets from the grocery store when we’re so close to planting season now. I can’t do it.

So, I took the photo and then sprinkled in a bit of dried basil to try and at least mimic the flavor a little.I also had to leave the whole thing on the stove for a bit so that the added pasta water and lemon juice would simmer off. It was very watery but simmered down to a nice, creamy sauce after a few minutes.

The Verdict

Yummy. I can’t say that this brought back many memories of Italy, but it was definitely tasty. Hubby thought so as well, but did admit it wasn’t his favorite of the pasta dishes I make. Of course, there’s bacon.

At one point he did walk by and asked whether I really thought that four rashers of bacon was going to be enough.  I thought the amount was fine, really. No, seriously, I did.

What I’d Do Different Next Time

Neither of us were too keen on the lemon in this. I know it’s in the title, but Hubby even asked what the vinegary flavor was. I think that with the tartness provided by the creme fraiche, the lemon just stood out too much. I’d either leave it out or cut it back to one tablespoon.

Because I did like the basil flavor, I would like to try this again with the fresh basil. But, I will be chopping it and mixing it in instead of leaving the whole leaves like they are.

Lemon, Bacon and Corn Pasta from Donna Hay Magazine, Summer 2012
 
Prep time

Cook time

Total time

 

Author:
Recipe type: Dinner
Cuisine: American
Serves: 4

Ingredients
  • 4 rashers bacon, trimmed
  • 400 g (half a big box) spaghettini
  • 2 cobs corn, husks and silks removed
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 2 cloves garlic, crushed
  • 2 tablespoons lemon juice
  • ¼ cup creme fraiche
  • Sea salt and cracked black pepper
  • 1 cup basil leaves

Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 425.
  2. Place the bacon on a baking tray and bake for 12 minutes or until crispy. Chop and set aside.
  3. Cook the pasta and corn in a large saucepan of salted boiling water for 10 minutes or until pasta is al dente and corn is tender. Drain, reserving ⅓ cup water. Remove the kernels and set aside
  4. Heat the oil in a saucepan over medium heat. Add the garlic and cook for 1 minute or until golden. Add the lemon juice, creme fraiche, salt and pepper, reserved water, pasta, bacon and corn and stir to combine.
  5. Top with basil to serve. Serves 4.

What I’d Do Different Next Time
Neither of us were too keen on the lemon in this. I know it’s in the title, but Hubby even asked what the vinegary flavor was. I think that with the tartness provided by the creme fraiche, the lemon just stood out too much. I’d either leave it out or cut it back to one tablespoon. Because I did like the basil flavor, I would like to try this again with the fresh basil. But, I will be chopping it and mixing it in instead of leaving the whole leaves like they are.

 

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