Ziti with kale pesto and crispy bacon

By Lidia Bastianich
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Recycling leftovers and turning them into new dishes is one of the most noble forms of cooking, in which food is respected and not wasted. This quick dish can be made with the remaining kale pesto from page 274, to serve either as a first course, or for a family dinner the next day.



  • Kosher salt
  • 454 grams ziti
  • 3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 4 cloves of garlic, crushed and peeled
  • 225 grams slab bacon, cut into lardoons
  • 2 cups of kale pesto
  • 1 cup grated Grana Padano


  1. Bring a large pot of salter water to boil the pasta. Add ziti and stir.
  2. Meanwhile, add the olive oil to a large skillet over medium heat. When oil is hot, add the garlic and let it sizzle for a minute, then add the bacon. Cook and stir until the bacon renders its fat and crisps, about six minutes.
  3. Add one cup pasta-cooking water to the skillet, and simmer until reduced by half, about two minutes.
  4. When pasta is al dente, remove it with a spider directly into the simmering sauce, adding a little more pasta water if it is dry.
  5. Scrape the pesto into a large pasta-serving bowl. Pour the pasta over the top, mix well, add the grated cheese, and toss, adding up to 1/2 cup more pasta water if it seems dry.

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