"A super rich, classic 'bacon and egg' spaghetti dish. Great to serve for company. This recipe also makes an unusual brunch offering." — SABRINATEE
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dry white wine
grated Parmesan cheese
salt and black pepper to taste
chopped fresh parsley
grated Parmesan cheese
It's a great recipe with some modifications.
An Italian friend of mine who cooks told me that the proper way to make smooth Carbonara sauce is to combine the beaten eggs with the grated parmesan, and then to pour that mixture onto the spaghetti once the spaghetti has cooled slightly (so that it's still hot, but so that the eggs don't cook and the cheese melts seamlessly into the eggs and pasta). I tried that, and the sauce was unbelievably creamy!
A few other changes I made - I used less pasta, pancetta instead of bacon, and grated a brick of fresh Parmigiano-Reggiano for a sharper flavour - so that was about 3 cups of grated cheese instead of 1 cup. The final product was full of flavour and my guests wanted seconds - and no need to add salt. I didn't use wine because I didn't have any at the moment, but next time I will - it will probably add some interesting dimension.
Also tips on reheating in microwave - if it's on a high setting, it will cook the egg and the pasta will solidify. I reheat mine on medium heat so the sauce stays creamy.
I gave it 3* because I think the ratio of pasta may be too much.
Quick hints...upon beating the eggs, try putting some dry Italian seasoning. I used a teaspoon of Mrs. Dash mixed in with the eggs. Great aroma to the dish.
To combat the dryness, load up on the olive oil and squeeze in 1/2 a lemon into the mixture.
Fresh basil works wonders for all you folks looking for that "zing" or feel that the pasta was lacking or missing something. Overall, not bad, but few modifications to suit your taste. But I agree to all out there that used less pasta in the dish. The mixture of the flavors has a very soft taste and with the right porportion of pasta would make it even more flavorful.
Best of luck to all. Keep sending those ideas!
SandyT. here -- thanks for all the positive reviews! This recipe is a home adaptation of one from Angeli Restaurant in Los Angeles (where I was pastry chef for four years). The original recipe used cured, unsmoked Italian pancetta bacon (which is delicious if you can find it). Myself, I use applewood smoked American bacon, and usually double the amount in the recipe. All your suggestions (adding cream, peas, mushrooms, etc., or omitting things) are great, because cooking should constantly evolve, depending on the cook. Please continue to let your personal tastes be your guide!
Okay, I have to laugh, too, when people say, "I love it! Now let me modify it!" This dish is my all-time favorite, and this recipe is simply oustanding! I've never found a recipe online that I thought approached my own version, til now. But (you were waiting for that). . .someone asked for something different. Three things I do different: bacon, cream, and nutmeg. I do half-bacon, half ground mild italian sausage, and set it all aside for later. When doing the "quick combine" at the end, I add about 3/4 cup heavy cream, at room temp. And to finish it, about 1/4 to 1/2 tsp. nutmeg. Overall, it richens it quite a bit, adds to the fat content (no kidding?), but "warms up" the flavor in a really rich, winter-night sort of way. Thanks for this terrific (and correct) version of this recipe, Sandy.
This is a near perfect and flawless recipe for the classic Spaghetti alla Carbonara. And even it it wasn't, who cares? It's darn good, which is really the only thing that matters. Traditionally this is made with pancetta (an Italian style bacon) but I actually prefer it this way, with regular ol' bacon! Just one suggestion--to ensure a creamy, silky sauce, mix the cheese and beaten eggs together before stirring into the pasta, off heat. Really nothing else to fiddle with or change here, because this is just delicious stuff!
This was outstanding! I took one of the other reviewers' tips, and so I added 3/4 cup of heavy cream and a little fresh nutmeg. I also doubled the amount of bacon. It was sinfully delicious and even my kids were going on and on about how the dinner 'rocked'! Definitely company worthy also. Thanks for sharing the recipe!
Neither my wife nor I had tried this dish before, so we weren't sure what to expect. Wow...was this good! Here are the changes I made: added 1 egg and an extra clove of garlic (omitted the wine); cooked the bacon, added onions, then the garlic; mixed the eggs with the parmesan cheese; drained the spaghetti and added it to a large bowl, then added the bacon/onion/garlic mixture (be sure to scrape in the drippings, then toss), finally added the egg mixture and tossed well. Served with parmesan and chopped parsley on top. This is definitely a new favorite.
My husband is a carbonara snob and loved this - I did use pancetta, however. I think ideas to modify a recipe are very flattering to the Chef who presented it. It's good enough to make it someone elses dish - which is wonderful about this website. Definitely the cream and yes nutmeg, but adding sausage? It is no longer traditional carbonara, but hey... whatever floats your gondola!
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet.
Spaghetti Carbonara II
Serving Size: 1/8 of a recipe
Servings Per Recipe: 8
Amount Per Serving
Calories from Fat: 190
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