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Spaghetti with pancetta, basil and capsicum

Spaghetti with pancetta, basil and capsicum

This is Martha’s favourite “every-day” dish, so we eat it a lot when capsicums are cheap and plentiful. Flavours come together really well in this very simple dish. Finished with loads of parmesan



125 gms spaghetti pasta – about quarter of a 500 gm packet, but don’t be too fussy!

80-100 gms of flat pancetta – you can buy this at some New World stores or from Farro Fresh. Picture below of what it looks like. You can use streaky bacon as a substitute

2 long red capsicums - I like cutting them into long slices about 8 cms but you can cut them however you like, but not too small pieces

1 container of fresh basil – from the supermarket or your fruit & veg shop

Olive oil

100 gms or more of shaved parmesan


Cooking instructions


  1. Bring a pot of water to the boil and cook the spaghetti as per the packet instructions (about 8-9 mins)
  2. Looking at the picture below, cut the pancetta crossways in half and half again, so you should have lots of strips about 4cms long
  3. In a non-stick frypan, drop a small amount of olive oil and on low-med heat, gently fry the pancetta until crispy– it should take about 2 mins. Remove and place on some handee towel
  4. Cook the capsicum quickly on high heat until slightly charring. Reduce heat and add back the pancetta and mix together for around one minute
  5. Turn off the heat and add the basil- leave smaller pieces and gently break in half the larger ones. Gently combine with the pancetta and capsicum and leave for around one minute
  6. Remove the spaghetti, drain and put in a serving dish and add the pancetta, capsicum and basil. Mix together
  7. Throw in a swig of olive oil and half the shaved parmesan on the top of your dish – put the rest of the parmesan on the dining table with some cracked pepper

Serves 2