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Tuesday, June 23, 2015

Rustic Spaghetti Carbonara

Spaghetti alla Carbonara is the quick pantry meal some cooks turn to when pressed for time. This variation combines all the familiar flavors but is particularly helpful for those who feel discomfort eating eggs which have been cooked only by hot pasta.


Rustic Spaghetti Carbonara

Source:  The Improvisational Cook by Sally Schneider

This is more a description of a process than a recipe. You may need to do a little multi-tasking.

Begin by frying some chopped bacon (or pancetta), at least one slice per diner, you can cook more if you like. Remove the cooked bacon and reserve for later, saving the skillet for frying eggs.

Using spaghetti or another variety of flat pasta cook the amount of pasta you plan to serve until it is slightly underdone since residual heat will allow it to continue cooking. Before draining save approximately a cup of the cooking water. Return pasta to pot and add about 1/2 c of the reserved pasta water and about 1/2 c of grated Parmigiano (per pound of pasta). Stir until the cheese has melted and coats the pasta, adding more pasta water to keep the dish moist but not runny. Season with salt and pepper and add the bacon pieces, tossing to mix well.

In the bacon grease, fry as many eggs as you need for diners.When the eggs are done (for this application they are a bit better runny, but it is your choice) make a mound of pasta on each diner's plate. Top with an egg or two, more Parmigiano, and chopped flat-leaf parsley, if you have it. Encourage each diner to break the egg yolk and toss their pasta lightly to mix in the egg.

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