Last week I was up at the swim centre watching the little guy pound up and down the black line as usual. While he did his laps I was thinking about the meal I was going to cook for dinner. And I was totally prepared and organised as I knew I had an organic free-range chicken in the fridge ready for the oven.
As soon as we walked in through the door from swim squads I was going to rub a herb butter under the skin, stuff it with a lemon then roast it and serve with a simple salad. Perfect.
Alas. We walked through the door and I went to the fridge to collect my organic chicken only to discover it was past its use-by date. When did that happen. Such a waste!
And now I had nothing for dinner.
I really didn’t want to order takeaway so I thought about what else I could cook. I always have pasta and pretty much always have bacon and then I found some asparagus I’d steamed the night before but hadn’t used. With a lemon, some garlic, a touch of chilli and some freshly grated parmesan, dinner was sorted.
- ⅓ cup olive oil
- 2 cloves crushed garlic
- tsp dried chilli flakes (more or less as per taste buds)
- rind of 1 lemon
- juice of 1 lemon
- 6 slices streaky bacon, cut into batons
- 400gm spaghetti
- 1 bunch asparagus, woody ends snapped off and spears cut into 3cm lengths
- freshly grated parmesan to serve
- In a small saucepan combine olive oil, garlic, chilli and lemon rind. Stir over low heat until garlic is softened but not browned. Remove from heat and stir in lemon juice.
- In a small frying pan, fry bacon until crispy. Remove bacon from pan and drain on paper towel.
- Meanwhile, bring a large saucepan of water to the boil. Add salt then add spaghetti and cook until almost cooked. Add asparagus, return to the boil then drain, reserving a little of the cooking water.
- Pour spaghetti, asparagus and remaining cooking water into a serving bowl and pour over olive oil mixture and lemon juice. Season. Toss to combine, then serve. Top with bacon and then parmesan cheese.
- Serve with a green salad if desired.