Pasta.

Bacon.

Mushrooms.

Wine.

Cheese.

Do I have your attention?

I shared this photo on my newest addiction, Instagram (my user name is rachelcooksblog) and every time I look at it, it makes me hungry:

Yep, even through the blurriness, I get hungry. All of my favorite things.

This is a super simple, easy to throw together meal for any day of the week. It’s easy enough for every day but just fancy enough for guests as well. Another great thing about it is that you can customize it depending on what you have in the house. Just make sure you have bacon. Or pancetta. Yum!

Whole Wheat Pasta with Bacon, Mushrooms and Red Onion
inspired by Martha Stewart Magazine

5 slices thick-cut bacon, cut into ~½-inch chunks
1 large red onion, cut into slices
12 ounces button mushrooms, sliced or halved depending on size (try to get them all to be close to the same size)
10 ounces baby spinach
½ cup dry white wine
1 pound whole wheat pasta–look for something on the short side
1 cup loosely packed fresh parsley, chopped
¼ cup Parmesan cheese, grated, plus more for serving
salt and pepper to taste

1. Heat a large pot of water over high heat for pasta. Meanwhile, in a very large skillet, cook bacon over medium heat until crisp. Remove bacon to a paper-towel lined plate. Remove all but ~1 tablespoon of grease from the pan. Raise heat to medium-high. To pan, add onions and salt/pepper to taste and cook until onions begin to soften (~4 minutes). Throw in mushrooms and cook until mushrooms are browned and onions are transparent (~3 minutes longer). Add wine, stir, and add spinach on top, cover for ~2 minutes, stirring occasionally, until spinach has wilted.
2. When pasta water boils, salt the water and add the pasta. Cook as directed on the package. Do not drain the water! Using a strainer or a slotted spoon, transfer the pasta to the pan with the vegetables. Add bacon. Stir, and add in pasta water as need to create a nice sauce–about 1/2 cup to 1 cup.
3. Take the pan off the heat, and add parsley and Parmesan cheese. Stir to combine evenly. Season with salt and pepper as needed.
4. Serve with additional cheese!

Verdict: Sooooo good. It had a strange addictive quality to it, you just could not stop eating it. Even when I had stuffed myself, I might have picked out one or two pieces of bacon…
Husband’s take: He loved this. I mean…loved it. I was a little surprised because I was worried that there wouldn’t be enough meat, but he could not get enough of this stuff.
Changes I would make: None.
Difficulty: Easy. Just make sure you have everything prepped before beginning: bacon cut, onions sliced, mushrooms washed and sliced, etc. You get the point. I even measured my wine so it was ready to pour in!

PS: How cute are these mushrooms? Let me tell you though–they got less and less cute as I was cleaning what seemed like a million of them! Don’t be lured in by their cuteness, normal-sized mushrooms taste exactly the same.