Bucatini con Pancetta
• 1 lb bucatini or spaghetti;
• 1 lb pancetta, diced;
• 1 tube doppio concentrato tomato paste;
• 1 onion sliced very very thin;
• A cup or so dried porcinis, rehydrating liquid reserved;
• Extra virgin olive oil;
• Parmagiano Reggiano to taste.
Using a large sauté pan, sauté the pancetta in some olive oil to render some of the pork fat into the pan. Drop in the onion and let them caramelize. Deglaze the pan as needed with the reserved liquid from the porcinis. After the onions are caramelized, add the porcini to heat through. Add the tomato paste and sauté the whole mix for a few minutes to bring out the flavor of the tomato paste. Add the bucatini cooked al dente and thoroughly mix together. The sauce will “marry” well with the pasta. Off the heat add the Parmagiano Reggiano and serve.
When I'm making a Bolognese sauce, I stir in a tablespoon or two of double-concentrated tomato paste to the browned meat, cook for about a minute or two, then add the rest of the ingredients (crushed tomatoes, etc.). I think this is one of the best products to keep on my pantry shelf. It's great to be able to use just a couple of tablespoons and not have to toss the rest out.
Fuschia Dunlop's General Tso's Chicken recipe calls for the double concentrated paste but I used regular tomato paste as Bethd and Youffraita suggest--here's the link to recipe because it was a killer-good dish that we went nuts over (you don't need potato starch either, cornstarch works just fine):