Everyday Cooking

Wednesday, December 12, 2007

Creamy Pumpkin Penne with Bacon

We have seen some dramatic weather in Sydney lately. Warm humid mornings gave in to dramatic lightning storms in the evenings. Hailstones the size of golf balls came raining down upon us on the weekend. Debris everywhere and it looks like there'd be more to come.

The electric storms definitely brought some restlesness in the air or is it just Christmas already making its presence felt? So much running around to do, cooking, visiting and shopping to get out of the way. Would I love Christmas without all these frantic activities? Probably not.
Amidst all the Christmas baking, jamming and cooking that's beein going on, it's good to have some simple fare during the week. This pasta dish fits the bill perfectly. Simple, easy to make and comforting on a stormy night.

Having small children in the house, we always have pureed vegetables in the freezer for adding to pasta sauces, using as a base for soups and to make into simple dips (My daughter is going thru a 'dips' phase. She likes to have something on the side to dunk her pieces of meat and vegetables in). This recipe makes use of puréed pumpkin but I've also made it before with puréed cauliflower (see smaller photo). Both versions have been a hit with the little girl.

To purée vegetables, cut into small cubes and steam until
very soft. Use a masher or hand blender to get a thick mush.

Creamy Pumpkin Penne with Bacon
serves 2

100 g bacon, cut into small pieces

200g Penne or other pasta

25g butter
1Tbsp plain flour
1 c milk
1/2 c grated Cheddar cheese
salt and pepper
1 c pureed pumpkin

1Tbsp chopped parsley

Fry the bacon until browned. Keep warm.

Cook the pasta in a generous amount of salted, boiling water.

In the meantime, melt the butter in a pot. Add the flour, stirring vigorously until a paste forms and comes off the sides of the pot easily.

Slowly add the milk while still stirring with a wire whisk. Cook very gently until smooth and thick but do not let it boil.

Take the pot off the heat, add the grated cheese and mix until all the cheese has melted. Return to heat on low and add the pureed pumpkin while stirring. Heat up until bubbling gently.

Take off the heat and season with salt and pepper.

Strain the cooked pasta and transfer into a bowl. Top with the pumpkin sauce and bacon. Garnish with parsley.

I'm sharing this for Presto Pasta night over at Once Upon a Feast.
This is the first time I've been participating although I've been keeping an eye on the wonderful weekly round up by Ruth for some time now. Be sure to visit!


Patricia Scarpin said...

This looks so good, sweetie!
Pasta always makes me happy.

My sister, who is now 14, had a dipping phase, too, as a kid. It was fun but sometimes she would make a huge mess while eating... :)

Deborah said...

I made a pumpkin penne a little while back, but I love the addition of bacon in this. This version sounds delicious!

Dhanggit said...

in france too, weather is not doing good..we are lucky to be living in southern part..if the rest of france is showing a bad weather .;we are always the last part of france to benefit a sunny day :-)

ps, love this combination penne and pumpkin..just like you i love adding vegetables to pasta..my hubby doesnt eat veggies thats the only way i can make him eat :-)

Ruth Daniels said...

It does sound wonderful and so glad you decided to share with Presto Pasta Nights. I look forward to many more!

Happy Holidays and enjoy the chaos!

Marvin said...

mmmm. pumpkin and bacon sound like they are made for each other.

maybahay said...

thanks pat. i love pasta and i just noticed that i haven't posted much pasta recipes so will have to change that.
i think the dipping habit, my daughter actually got from me too:-)

thanks deborah and dhanggit.

will be joining for more for sure, ruth.

thanks for visiting again marvin.

Gay Carrillo said...

Sarap! I can't wait to try this one...

tigerfish said...

I like your final pumpkin touch, and of course, that bacon. Wonderful!

Coffee & Vanilla said...

I will be posting meme you tagged me for today :)
Thank you for choosing me... Margot

Coffee & Vanilla said...


I actually have never tried Panettone yet... but I hear about it every Christmas here so I want to try finally :) I will search for the recipe and I will try to make one!! :)

Peter M said...

I'm diggin' your site...a great pasta dish!

Kevin said...

The pumpkin penne looks really good. The saltiness of the bacon would go well with the sweetness of the pumpkin.