Bowties with Bacon and Asparagus

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There are so many things I love about this recipe…it's from a family cookbook (always a plus), the spices are simple (ones I usually have in my spice drawer), it can be done is 2 pans (one to boil the pasta, the other to cook everything else in) and it's so easy, my 12 year old can make it with almost no help from Mom.

It's also a great base recipe.  Change out the bacon and asparagus for artichoke hearts and pancetta.  Use leftover cubed ham and peas.  Squash, broccoli, fresh tomatoes…whatever you've got too much of in the garden…totally flexible and easy to eat in season.   Boxed pasta, fresh pasta, whole wheat, gluten free – adapt it to whatever you prefer. 

Bowties with Bacon and Asparagus
Serves 4

1/2 lb. thick bacon, diced
1/2 lb. asparagus, ends trimmed and cut on the bias into 1 inch pieces
2 t. Italian seasoning
1/4 t. garlic salt
1/2 t. crushed red pepper
1 lb. bow tie pasta, cooked and drained
1/2 c. grated Romano cheese (or Parmesean…or Asiago…it's flexible)

  1. Cook bacon in large nonstick skillet over medium heat, stirring frequently, until crisp (5-6 minutes).
  2. Stir in asparagus, Italian seasoning, crushed red pepper and garlic salt.  Cook, stirring ocassionally, until asparagus is crisp-tender (5 minutes).
  3. Remove pan from heat and add cooked bow ties pasta.
  4. Toss, top with cheese and serve.

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