Sunday, December 22, 2013

Spaghetti alla Carbonara

Carbonara doesn't have to be only a dish you eat when you go to a nice Italian restaurant. This super easy recipe is one of my go-to meals when I have no idea what to make for the family and I just start pulling ingredients out of the pantry. It takes very little time and is so delicious, you'll be Master Chef for the night!

This recipe was inspired by Tyler Florence's Spaghetti alla Carbonara.

Servings: 6 - 8

1 pound dry spaghetti
4 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, divided
5-6 slices of bacon, sliced thinly (or, if you are feeling fancy, use pancetta)
1 tablespoon of minced garlic, about 3-4 cloves
2 large eggs
1/2 cup of shredded mixed Italian cheese, plus extra for serving (I used a blend of Parmesan, Asiago, Fontina, and Provolone)
Ground black pepper, to taste
Parsley, to taste

Bring a large pot of salted water, with 2 tablespoons of olive oil, to a boil.

Add the pasta and cook for 8 - 10 minutes or until cooked al dente.

Reserve 1/4 cup of the cooking water and then drain the pasta.

While the pasta is cooking:
Heat the remaining 2 tablespoons of olive oil in a large, deep skillet on medium to medium high.

Add the bacon and cook until crispy, not burnt.

Add the garlic and saute for about 1 minute, or until the garlic is soft.

Remove the pan from the heat and add the drained pasta. Stir with pasta spoon, or wisk, until combined.

Whisk together the eggs and the cheese and slowly add to the pan, stirring quickly to avoid scrambling the eggs.

Add the reserved water and stir until completely incorporated.

Add ground pepper to taste.

Serve with extra cheese and parsley. 

Have the bacon already sliced and the eggs and cheese already whisked before you start cooking. This will keep you from getting overwhelmed when it is time to combine everything.

It is extremely important to remove the pan from the heat before you add the pasta. Keeping it on the heat will cause the eggs to scramble when you add them.

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