Authentic Spaghetti Carbonara


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Today’s recipe is my idea of the ideal mid-week meal.  Time and effort required are both low, only 5 ingredients are needed (7 if you want to count salt and pepper…) and it is unbelievably delicious.

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Spaghetti Carbonara done well (read authentically) is a joy.  I remember eating ready-made versions in my youth.  They were packed full of mushrooms, ham, cream and possibly a little bit of fake parmesan.  To be honest, despite their inauthenticity, I rather enjoyed them and knew no better.

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Then I tried “proper” spaghetti alla carbonara.  No mushrooms or cream in sight.  Just smokey, salty pancetta, eggs and a large amount of black pepper and parmesan.  It was a sensation.

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Whilst I’m claiming authenticity with this recipe, I have included some rogue garlic.  I love its addition, but ask an Italian Mamma and she’d probably be horrified.  I’ve also used a whole egg though using just the yolk makes the dish much richer.  Either way it will be delicious.  My mouth is watering just thinking about it.  Buon appetito!

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This time last year:  Green Quinoa Salad With Lemon Yoghurt Dressing
This time 2 years ago:  Purple Plum Torte
This time 3 years ago:  Easy Pizza Dough
This time 4 years ago:  Mozzarella & Red Pesto Burgers

Authentic Spaghetti Carbonara

Seves 1

100g spaghetti
1 teaspoon olive oil
2 rashers smoked streaky bacon
1 small or 1/2 large garlic clove, crushed
1 egg
20g parmesan cheese, grated
Black pepper and salt
2 tablespoons pasta cooking water

To make:
  1. Cook the spaghetti according to the packet instructions.
  2. Whilst the pasta cooks, beat the egg in a bowl large enough to accommodate your pasta.  Add the parmesan cheese, a pinch of salt and a good grinding of black pepper.
  3. Slice bacon into 1cm wide pieces along the length of the rasher.  Heat the oil over a medium high heat, add the bacon and cook for 5 minutes until starting to crisp.  Add the garlic and cook for a further minute then add to the egg mixture.
  4. Once the pasta is cooked, remove 2 tablespoons of cooking water and add to the egg mixture.  Drain the pasta and tip into the egg mixture, turning everything over with tongs to ensure the pasta is well coated and everything is distributed.  Serve immediately with an extra grating of parmesan if desired.

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