Difficulty: Easy - for beginners
3 cups cavatappi pasta, uncooked (can use penne or mostaccioli instead)
2 slices bacon
1 small onion, chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced
2 cans 14.5 oz each Italian style diced tomatoes, drained (I did not drain)
1/4 cup tomato paste
1/8 tsp crushed red pepper
1 cup shredded Italian three cheese blend
1/4 cup chopped fresh basil
1. Cook pasta in large saucepan as directed on package. Meanwhile, cook bacon in large skillet until crisp. Remove bacon from skillet, reserving 1 tsp drippings from skillet. Drain bacon on paper towels.
2. Add onions to reserved drippings; cook and stir on medium heat for 5 minutes. Stir in garlic; cook 1 minute. Add tomatoes, tomato paste and crushed red pepper; simmer 5-6 minutes or until thickened, stirring occasionally.
3. Drain pasta; return to pan. Crumble bacon. Add to pasta with sauce; toss to coat. Spoon onto platter; top with cheese and basil.