I really want to learn as much as I can about Italian food, especially its sauces. When I discovered how easy it was to make an Alfredo sauce, I knew carbonara was next. It is one of my favourite dishes to get when I dine out. I wanted to know what was behind this fabulous sauce other than the delicious bacon.
One of the best things about this recipe is there are not a ton of ingredients. I like to use Catelli Smart Pasta because it is a little less self-indulgent due to its high fibre content.
You will need 1/2 lb spaghettini, 4 oz/slices of 1″ thick bacon, 1 egg, one egg yolk, 1 cooked and cubed chicken breast…
… 1/2 cup grated Parmesan, 2 tbsp of heavy cream, salt, pepper and reserve some of the pasta cooking liquid.
In a very large pot cook pasta until al dente in very salty water.
Whisk together heavy cream and eggs.
Stir in the Parmesan.
Fry the bacon until tender and cooked.
FYI: this was too dark and crispy. I took my eyes off the bacon for a second and bam! So keep an eye on the bacon and once cooked, put on a paper towel.
Putting Everything Together
When the pasta is close to being done remove some of the cooking liquid, carefully. Drain the pasta.
Return the pasta to the large pot and add the chicken and bacon. Toss everything in the cream/egg/cheese mixture.
The residual heat of the pasta will cook the sauce. Add a little of the cooking liquid and stir together. Season with salt and pepper.
Serve and add a little more grated Parm and freshly ground black pepper. Delicious and so much easier to make than I thought it would be!
I actually had some leftovers of the chicken spaghettini carbonara and asked myself, what would Mom do with it?
Answer? Fry it! LOL. Yup, it was the weekend and I did not want the food to go to waste so I heated up some olive oil in a cast iron frying pan and added some minced garlic. Then I heated the dish through with a touch of cream.
I also fried up some breadcrumbs and added it to the pasta with more Parmesan, of course. If it got too dry I added some more cream.
This added fascinating texture to the dish and made it more substantial, the perfect weekend indulgence. Comfort food at its best!
Learning to make the most of basic ingredients is one way to stay on a budget that appeals to me. Especially when it tastes this delicious!