Friday, February 4, 2011
BAKED TORTELLINI WITH BACON
How would you like to put a restaurant-quality dinner on the table in about 20 minutes? Oh, and it has bacon and cheese in it, just in case ease of preparation and quality didn't get you hooked. I tore this recipe out of an Everyday Food a few months back and finally got around to making it. It will definitely have a place on our pasta rotation.
4 slices bacon, sliced crosswise into 1/2 inch pieces (I skipped the slicing and cooked then crumbled the bacon)
1 small white onion, diced medium
1 garlic clove, minced
Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper to taste
1 tbs all-purpose flour
2 cups whole milk
2 pkg. (about 9 oz each) fresh cheese tortellini
1/2 cup grated Parmesan (1 oz)
Heat broiler with rack in top position. In a saute pan, cook bacon over medium heat until browned and crisp. Transfer to a paper towel to drain. Add onion and garlic to the drippings, season with salt and pepper, and cook until onion is soft (about 7 minutes). Add flour and cook, stirring, about 30 seconds.
Slowly add milk, whisking constantly. Add the tortellini and bring to a boil over medium-high heat, stirring occasionally. Reduce to a simmer and cook, stirring often, until sauce thickens, about 4 minutes.
Remove from heat, stir in bacon and half the Parmesan. Transfer to a 2-quart broiler proof baking dish that has been sprayed with nonstick spray. Top with the remaining cheese and broil until golden brown, about 4 minutes.
I cut this recipe in half, using a 9 oz package of Buitoni 3-cheese tortellini. DSO and I split this, so we served 2 generously instead of the recommended 3 (it was the weekend, what can I say). I used individual casserole dishes that were broiler proof. By eliminating the slicing of the bacon and using a skillet instead of a saucepan, which the original recipe called for, I further reduced the ease of this recipe. I had no doubt whatsoever that we would both enjoy this baked pasta and it did not disappoint. There was more than enough sauce, but the nutritional data will reveal that it was not an over-the-top indulgence. With all the richness of a creamy white sauce--the sauce coats, there isn't a lot of it--and the wonderful flavor of onions cooked in bacon drippings, DSO and I agreed that we would try this next time with a mushroom or a prosciutto tortelloni. There will definitely BE a next time. The nutritional information is based on the recipe above and 6 servings.
N.I.: 416 cal; 16.3 g fat; 17.1 g protein; 48.5 g carb; 2.2 g fiber