Spaghetti alla Carbonara with Prosciutto

 

I’ve been feeling pretty tired lately for some reason, maybe its the days growing slightly cooler in the evenings, or my going to be too late :)

I was starving and needed to make an easy quick dinner before I stood at the fridge, door open, eating anything I could find that looked appealing (and that has happened more time than I care to admit). It had been a busy day and it was almost 7:30pm before I had a chance to settle down and make something to eat.

I get some gorgeous eggs from my CSA and I wanted to make something to highlight them, but that didn’t feel like I was eating breakfast (nothing wrong with breakfast for dinner though!). I thought, I have eggs, Parmesan, cream and Prosciutto, Spaghetti alla Carbonara! Its got to be one of the easiest meals you can make, and its so deliciously rich and satisfying.

My mom would make this for us, she would call it pasta with bacon and eggs to make it fun for us Canadian-ized kids :) She would use bacon, but its harder and harder to find natural bacon it seems these days. I am pretty picky with my cured meats, and would prefer nitrate-free, which seems almost impossible to find in my area. So I buy prosciutto which is just pork shoulder cured with only salt. Its delicious, salty and fatty. Its obviously doesn’t have that same smokey flavour as bacon (which I miss), but it has its own great flavour which does the trick for me.

I really like the eggs to shine in this, so I only add a little bit of cream to bring the sauce together a bit. You could always use some of the water that the pasta cooked in as a substitute, or you can use milk instead. You can add cooked peas or broccoli at the end when you toss in the prosciutto if you wish for a change. I also like using the whole eggs for this, I’ve seen some recipes that just use the yolks.

 

Spaghetti alla Carbonara with Prosciutto

2 large (or 3 medium) eggs
1 tbsp cream
2 servings of pasta
salt + pepper
about 2 tbsp grated Parmesan or Pecorino Romano
6 oz (170 g) chopped prosciutto, reserve some for sprinkling on top (you can use bacon, canadian bacon, or pancetta)
1 tbsp finely chopped parsley, plus some extra for garnishing

Cook pasta in boiling salted water.

Meanwhile, fry prosciutto in a hot pan. If there is not much fat on the prosciutto, add a tiny splash of oil.

Crack the eggs into a bowl and whisk until fully combined and somewhat frothy. Add the cream and Parmesan – whisk briefly to combine.

Drain the pasta when it is done cooking and is al dente. Place the pasta back into the cooking pot (but off the heat) and slowly pour in the egg mixture while stirring it into the pasta. You want this to be a nice creamy sauce and not have it turn into scrambled eggs, which will happen if there is too much heat, or if the egg mixture sits. So you really want to keep it moving while you are pouring. The heat of the cooked pasta will end up cooking the egg sauce just enough.

Toss in the fried prosciutto and some parsley. Serve with some grated Parmesan and some of the reserved fried prosciutto and parsley on top.

 

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