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What you need:

  • 140 ml extra virgin olive oil plus extra

  • 4 garlic cloves finely chopped 

  • 1 onion chopped in half and finely sliced or chopped depending on the final dish

  • 2 bay leaves

  • 2 pinches salt flakes

  • 2 kg tomatoes on truss, very ripe and soft, skinned and roughly chopped

  • 680g (2 boxes) Barilla penne 

  • S&P to taste at the end of the cooking

  • 175 g St Bernard’s rindless bacon finely sliced 

  • 50 g pinenuts, toasted

  • 150 g pecorino, grated

  • 1 tbs Celtic sea salt

  • freshly ground black pepper

  • small handful of Basil leaves



  • mix of rocket leaves

  • witlof

  • radicchio

  •  parsley leaves


Salad dressing

  • 30 ml sherry vinegar

  • 90ml extra virgin olive oil

  • salt and pepper



Step 1: To prepare the tomatoes, using a small knife core the tomatoes, score the skin in a cross at the other end. Boil a large pot of boiling water and have a large bowl of iced water at the ready. Plunge the tomatoes in boiling water for about 30 seconds (do this in batches), then lift out with a slotted spoon and refresh in cold water for a minutes. Remove the tomatoes and peel the skins, they will slip off easily.

Step 2: Heat 6 Tablespoons of olive oil in a heavy based saucepan over medium heat.

 Step 3: Add the onion, garlic and bay leaf and cook until translucent but not brown, this will take about 5 minutes

Step 4: Add the tomatoes to the saucepan with the onion and stir to combine. Turn down the heat as low as you can and cook uncovered for 2-2 ½ hours, stirring occasionally. If it is looking dry add a splash of water. Taste and season with salt and pepper.

Step 5: Cook the pasta as per packet instructions. 

 Step 6: While the pasta is cooking add a splash of oil to a frypan over medium heat. Cook the bacon until crispy.  

 Step 7: Toss the salad leaves together in a bowl. Mix the dressing ingredients together and pour over the leaves just before serving.

Step 8: To serve the pasta, stir the pasta through the sauce and tip into a large share bowl. Season to taste and drizzle a little olive oil over the top. Top with crispy bacon, pine nuts, pecorino and basil.



  • Leave tomatoes out of the fridge to ripen, especially in the cooler months.

  • You can lesson the cooking time, but the longer you cook the tomatoes the sweeter the sauce will be. You can double the recipe and freeze in small portions. Left over tomato sauce can be stored in the fridge. 

  • This could be done in an ovenproof baking dish. Just sauté the onions garlic and bay in a saucepan first then combine that and the tomato and cover. Cook in an oven at 160C.


To make Low FODMAP:

-      Omit garlic and use garlic infused oil instead

-      Omit onion and use the green part of spring onions

-      Keep truss tomatoes to no more than 120g per serve as larger serves are high in fructose

-      Use Barilla gluten free penne