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Bring a large stockpot of water up to boil. Season liberally with salt. Cook the pasta per the package directions until al dente.
While the pasta cooks make the sauce. In a large nonstick skillet add the chopped bacon and bring up to heat over medium. Cook until brown and crispy and the fat has rendered off. Remove all but 2 tbsp. of fat from the pan.
Next add in the tomato paste and cook for a few minutes to caramelize. Add in the 1/2 cup of vodka and cook for 2-3 minutes or until most of it has absorbed. Turn the heat to low and add in the heavy cream. Whisk together.
Add the pasta directly to the sauce pan mix together so everything is fully coated. Taste for seasoning, adding more salt or pepper if needed. Remove from heat and stir in the 1/2 cup of parmesan cheese. If the sauce looks too thick you can add 1/2 cup of pasta cooking liquid.
To serve spoon some into a shallow bowl and top with parmesan cheese and chili flakes if using. Serve immediately.
Recipe Courtesy of Megan Mitchell