Also known as coal miner’s spaghetti (according to wikipedia), pasta alla carbonara is a really simple and easy dish to prepare (why I’m done cooking in under 20 minutes). It’s a hearty, delicous and very satisfying. I like to use Tyler Florence’s simple recipe with some adjustments to suit my family’s taste and my preference in cooking:
I replaced the bacon fat with EVOO (extra-virgin olive oil) to make it healthier; took the bacon off the pan and added it back towards the end of cooking cause I want the bacon still crisp when I serve them. I also thought that 1 pound of spaghetti is too much for the amount of the ingredients for the sauce so I only used less than 12 ounces which is enough for the four of us plus I think that the recipe could use more bacon, I’ll definitely add more next time. ü Make your own adjustment/s too to the recipe as needed.
The basic ingredients for pasta alla carbonara is spaghetti, fettucini or cappellini; eggs, parmesan cheese (grated parmegiano reggiano if you have it , is always better) bacon or ham plus olive oil..if you have these in stock, you can make yourself a yummy pasta carbonara in just a short time.
brown the bacon, transfer to a platter and set aside; discard bacon fat and replace with EVOO
heat olive oil and saute the garlic,-you don’t have to brown it just make it soft, it’s just my personal preference
combine eggs and grated parmesan cheese in a bowl
add the cooked spaghetti to the pan, turn off heat/fire then add egg-parmesan mixture
then put the bacon back too; mix well
season with ground pepper and more grated parmesan cheese if needed; add chopped parsley if using. Happy eating! 🙂
- 10-12 ounces spaghetti
- 3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
- 4 ounces pancetta or slab bacon, cubed or sliced into small strips
- 5 garlic cloves, finely chopped
- 2 large eggs
- 1 cup grated parmesan cheese (or even better freshly grated Parmigiano-Reggiano), plus more for serving
- ground black pepper
- 1 handful fresh flat-leaf parsley, chopped (optional)
- Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil, add the pasta and cook for 8 to 10 minutes or until tender yet firm (as they say in Italian “al dente”). Drain the pasta well, reserving ½ cup of the starchy cooking water to use in the sauce if you wish.
- Meanwhile, heat a little olive oil in a deep skillet over medium flame. Add the bacon and cook until crisp and the fat is rendered. Transfer bacon in a small platter and set aside; discard bacon fat and replace with 3 tablespoons of olive oil.
- Add the garlic into the hot EVOO and saute for less than 1 minute to soften. (I like to cook it until it browns a little). Add hot spaghetti to the pan and toss for 2 minutes to coat the strands in the olive oil.
- Beat the eggs and Parmesan together in a mixing bowl, stirring well to prevent lumps. Remove the pan from the heat and pour the egg/cheese mixture into the pasta, whisking quickly until the eggs thicken, but do not scramble (this is done off the heat to ensure this does not happen.)
- Thin out the sauce with a bit of the reserved pasta water, until it reaches desired consistency. Season the carbonara with several turns of freshly ground black pepper and taste for salt.
- Mound the spaghetti carbonara into warm serving bowls and garnish with chopped parsley. Pass more cheese around the table.