Kale needs bacon, it is just too healthy without it. Our garden is full of kale right now, Parmesan Kale Chips have been in rotation, and some is chopped and bagged in the freezer for Smoothies. Simply paired with bacon, pasta and Parmesan, this recipe is quick and easy for busy week night dinners!
Six leaves of kale may seem like a lot, but it really cooks down when chopped. Run your knife along the stem of the kale to slice the leaves from the stem, so you have a large pile of leaves that seems unmanageable and falling off your counter. Wade them up into a tight pile and hold that pile with your left hand while slicing through it with your knife in your right hand. Chop if fairly small so it will blend in with the strands of spaghetti.
Bacon Kale Spaghetti
- 1 lb spaghetti
- 6 strips bacon sliced
- 5-6 leaves kale stems removed and chopped small
- 3 cloves garlic minced
- ¼ t kosher salt
- 6 grinds fresh black pepper
- ½ c Parmesan cheese grated, plus more for serving
- Cook the pasta in salted boiling water, following package instructions
- Start the bacon when you start heating the pasta water. In a large skillet over medium heat, cook chopped bacon until crisp and remove it to a bowl. Discard 2T of the fat, leaving the rest in the skillet
- Add kale to the remaining bacon fat and saute about 5 minutes, add ½ cup of the hot pasta water (while the pasta is cooking is fine) to the kale and continue cooking until evaporated (lower the temp a bit if needed)
- Add garlic, salt and pepper and cook another minute
- With tongs, add pasta to the kale skillet, a little of the pasta water with it is ok
- Add the bacon back in and toss the entire mixture well with tongs, adding the grated Parmesan as you go. Allow the pasta to stay on the heat another minute or so while tossing, and add another ½ cup of the starchy pasta water if it seems too dry. If you sit and eat and then go back for seconds, you may want to add another ½ cup of the pasta water and toss well, it will dry as it sits The pasta water, bacon fat and the melting Parmesan is what makes "the sauce."
- Top with more Parmesan for serving