When you are reading this you are probably isolated in your home with plenty of pasta. Yes it must be in your larder since there isn’t any left in supermarkets. Or, maybe you found this recipe when all of this coronavirus mess is over and you still have plenty of pasta left from stockpiling. Either way this recipe will give you a chance to use it in a quick and delicious dish. There are hundreds if not thousands recipes for carbonara out there. I am not claiming mine is the only correct one but I’d like to think it is one of the tastiest. In my world you have to scrap all recipes using cream. Believe me, you don’t need it to achieve creamy sauce. Also, I prefer parmigiano instead of pecorino romano. I know purist amongst you will disagree but I find parmigiano having more interesting flavour. Oh, and I use mushrooms in the sauce sometimes. I know this is unorthodox but I really like mushrooms. Can’t help it. You can safely keep the mushrooms out if you don’t like them. My pasta of choice is linguine but you can substitute it with bucatini or spaghetti.
Makes 2 main course portions or 3 starters (you can easily upsize or downsize, it’s 1 large egg, 2 tblsp cheese and 30g pancetta per 100g pasta)
- 300g linguine (or other suitable alternative)
- 3 large eggs
- 6 tblsp freshly grated parmigiano
- 120g cubed pancetta (or bacon lardons if you cannot get pancetta)
- plenty of freshly ground black pepper
- 3 – 5 mushrooms sliced (optional)
- bunch of fresh parsley freshly chopped
- salt to taste
- Place a large frying pan on medium heat with a splash of oil. Add pancetta and cook until almost golden and almost crispy, about 5 minutes. Stir occasionally so that the pancetta cooks evenly.
- Slice the mushrooms, if using, and add to the pancetta. Let it fry for another 3 – 5 minutes until mushrooms are cooked.
- Whisk the eggs in a bowl with half of the cheese and black pepper.
- Meanwhile cook pasta in a large saucepan of boiling water until al dente. Drain the pasta reserving 2 – 3 tablespoons of cooking water. Tip the pasta back into the saucepan.
- Add in the pancetta and stir well. Pour over the eggs and cheese mixture and mix everything together for at least 30 seconds with a wooden spoon. Egg and cheese mixture will emulsify with the hot moisture present on the pasta creating wonderfully creamy sauce. If the sauce is too thick add a splash of reserved water to loosen it.
- Serve immediately in pre heated bowls sprinkled with parsley and remaining cheese.