A short and snappy pasta dish for you here. In fact, perfect for anyone wanting a quick and tasty supper with only twenty minutes to spare. That’s roughly ten minutes for prep (depending on how fast you can chop an aubergine and a packet of bacon) and ten minutes cooking time.

We’ve been delving into Gino D’Acampo’s ‘Gino’s Pasta’ for some week day inspiration and this one took my fancy. Fundamentally because it involves aubergines, one of my vegetables of choice. And bacon (or pancetta) – no explanation needed. The full ingredients list and cooking method can be found in his book.

To make our version of this dish (serves four) you will need:
– One tablespoon of butter
– Two tablespoons of EV olive oil
– A packet of smoked back bacon
– One medium sized aubergine (diced into 1cm cubes)
– One 250g tub of mascarpone cheese
– One teaspoon of dried oregano
– 500g of fusilli (Gino suggests penne)
– Four tablespoons of grated parmesan (you can also use pecorino)
– Salt and black pepper to taste
– *Gino also suggests garnishing with some finely chopped fresh parsley but we omitted this and used the rocket we had to hand instead.
– Heat the oil and butter to a medium heat in a large stove top pan.
– Add in the bacon and aubergine together and fry for around five minutes or until golden and crispy, stirring occasionally.
– Incorporate the cheese and oregano, and mix thoroughly. Cook for a further two minutes then remove from the heat.
– Meanwhile, cook the pasta in a pan of boiled, salted water according to the packet instructions.
– Drain and then add the pasta to the sauce, stirring in the grated parmesan.
– Season to taste and serve immediately with any desired.

This meal really is no fuss at all. Taste wise, the aubergine marries delightfully with the mascarpone to create a rich and creamy sauce that coats the pasta a treat, in contrast to the salty smokiness of the bacon. A comforting plate for these cold and blustery February days.