Spaghetti Carbonara

This is flavorful recipe that you would swear had cream in it, but it doesn’t. The creaminess comes from the eggs which are cooked by the residual heat of the spaghetti. The traditional recipe uses guanciale (cured pork cheeks) which you can get at Whole Foods but I find that bacon works just as well so long as it is thick cut and high-quality.

This recipe was adapted from a recipe in Bon Appetit.

Note: You can put the extra egg whites into ice cube trays and freeze them for later use or you can make meringues (bit that’s a different recipe).

Servings: 4 large

Ingredients

  • 1/4 pound (3 pieces) high-quality, thick cut bacon, cut into 1/3 inch pieces
  • 7 large egg yolks
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 pound spaghetti
  • 1/2 cup (1 ounce) finely grated Parmigiano Reggiano cheese
  • Chili flakes, to taste

Recipe

  1. Put bacon into a large cold skillet and cook over medium-low heat until fat is rendered out and bacon just barely browns. Reserve 1 teaspoon of the drippings and drain the rest of the bacon. Put bacon in a large bowl to cool. Add egg yolks and egg to bowl and whisk to blend.
  2. Cook spaghetti for 1 minute less than the directions state. Drain reserving 1/2 cup of the pasta water.
  3. Add spaghetti, 2 tablespoons of the pasta water and the reserved drippings to the egg mixture. Toss well to coat (the residual heat of the spaghetti will cook the eggs). Add the cheese in three batches tossing between each batch to make sure it is melted. Add chili flakes (if using) and continue to toss until sauce thickens. Add pasta water as needed until the sauce is the consistency you like.
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