Monday, January 11, 2010

Spaghetti alla Carbonara

No matter how devoid a pantry might become, there should always be staples for the quick dinner. No, you don't have to go somewhere to buy food without even getting out of your car. This meal can be assembled as fast as you can boil water.

If I had frozen peas, they would have been warmed and thrown in. Next time I'll add a little minced yellow onion, and for sure the fresh parsley that I didn't have.

Make sure everything is done at the same time, you want the heat from the pasta to cook the eggs. Mise en place!

Spaghetti alla Carbonara
3-4 servings

1 lb. dried spaghetti
3 cloves garlic, minced
4-6 oz. thick bacon, sliced into 1/4" pieces, or pancetta
1 C + 2 TB fresh parm-regg
2 large eggs
sea salt
1 TB fresh parsley, chopped

In a small mixing bowl, beat the two eggs and C of parm-regg until smooth. When you start cooking the pasta, over medium heat coat a large saute pan with EVOO. Add the bacon and render for about 5 minutes until crispy, stirring often. Toss in the garlic and stir for thirty seconds and remove from heat. When your pasta is al dente, drain quickly and toss in the saute pan. You want about 1/3 C or so of the pasta cooking water, draining quickly should do the trick. If things seem a little dry you can add a bit more. Stir the pasta well to coat thoroughly with the bacon fat and garlic. Make a well in the center of the pasta, then quickly whisk in the egg mixture, ensuring the eggs aren't scrambled too much. Season with fresh pepper and coarse sea salt. Once plated, top with remaining parm-regg, the undisputed king of all cheeses, and parsley. You could pour just about anything with this, I would reach for a Côtes du Rhône or Pinot Noir.

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