AUTHENTIC SPAGHETTI ALLA CARBONARA

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What's indeed to be considered an authentic Spaghetti alla Carbonara (kahr-boh-NAH-rah). An Italian pasta recipe from Roman cuisine. I visited Rome a few times in my life and since then I always enjoyed eating their best carbonara. Sure is one of the most delectable and easy Italian pasta recipe you can make at home...

Spaghetti alla Carbonara

Some say it derives from a nineteenth-century secret political society called: "Carbonari". Others believe it comes from Abruzzo's and Lazio's coal miners lunch. Whatever its origin it's a Roman dish served in trattoria (local restaurant) of many Italian cities.

Spaghetti alla carbonara could have many variations that include adding a little garlic, onion, hot pepper and parsley. But the Italian-American variation is too often made with the addition of heavy cream or even another pasta shape like rigatoni. I think this dish is best at its purest with the only flavors of the Italian "guanciale" or "pancetta" and the Pecorino cheese to enhance this egg-coated spaghetti recipe.

Recipe:

Authentic Spaghetti Alla Carbonara

  • Preparation Time: 10 mins
  • Cooking Time: 10 mins

Ingredients: serves 3 or 4

  • ½ lb. (200 g) spaghetti or rigatoni pasta
  • 3 ½ oz. (100 g) Italian diced bacon or authentic guanciale
  • 2 eggs (yolks only)
  • 3 oz. (85 g) grated pecorino romano cheese or parmigiano reggiano cheese
  • salt & freshly milled black pepper
Carbonara Dish

Instructions:

  1. Begin by beating with a whisk the yolks of 2 eggs, add a pinch of salt and fresh milled black pepper to taste.
  2. Take a frying pan, add the sliced strips of guanciale or diced bacon. Cook for a couple of minutes until the fat has become transparent and slightly crisp then turn off the cooker.
  3. Steps 1 and 2 can be achieved while the pasta is cooking. So once ready, first drain the pasta and then throw the spaghetti or rigatoni in the frying pan, this while they are still warm.
  4. Take the beaten eggs with black pepper and pour them over the pasta. Mix the all with a wooden fork until the eggs mixture turns to a thin emulsion.
  5. Add the Pecorino and/or Parmigiano Reggiano, or the one of your choice and give a last mix. Now it's ready to be plated and served immediately with an extra grate of cheese which it's up to taste.

Note:

The authentic recipe does not use heavy cream, so leaving spaghetti lighter and less caloric, but willingly is a variation to try. Another variation is to use half dose of Pecorino Romano cheese and half dose of grated Parmigiano Reggiano. Anyway the authentic carbonara just calls for Pecorino Romano which is best for this recipe. If you like or don't have pecorino cheese instaed you can use Parmigiano Reggiano.

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Where to find the best carbonara in Rome...

I'm sure you can find a much better spaghetti alla carbonara if you are in Rome than the one described here.

Mainly, because it’s difficult to find authentic guanciale (pork cheek) at grocery stores abroad. It’s a real mission even for me that I live in Italy. So that’s why it’s easy to fall back on store-bought diced bacon.

But if you are planning to visit Rome in a next future there are a few places where you can eat some of the best carbonara around: Best Spaghetti alla Carbonara in Rome...

Ingredients: serves 3 or 4

I tried to do my best, but I could only put my hands on some diced bacon that I got at the grocery store. Maybe I could have done a better job searching longer for a piece of guanciale, but instead I held on. I thought I didn't  want to dishearten you if you might not get a piece of authentic guanciale were you live.

  • ½ lb (200 g) spaghetti or rigatoni
  • 3 ½ oz (100 g) Italian guanciale or pancetta or diced bacon
  • 2 eggs (yolk only)
  • 3 oz (85 g) grated Pecorino Romano cheese or Parmigiano Reggiano cheese
  • salt & freshly milled black pepper

Note:

Scale up and double the ingredients if you need more servings. Anyway an egg yolk for person is the way to go if you want to make more carbonara to season your pasta.

Ingredients

Instructions:

  1. Begin by beating with a whisk the yolks of 2 eggs, add a pinch of salt and fresh milled black pepper to taste.
  2. Take a frying pan, add sliced strips of guanciale or diced bacon. Cook for a couple of minutes until the fat has become transparent and slightly crisp then turn off the cooker.
  3. All the above can be done while the pasta is cooking so once ready first drain and then throw the spaghetti or rigatoni in the frying pan while they are still hot.
  4. Take the beaten eggs with black pepper and pour it over the pasta. Mix the whole with a wooden fork until the eggs mixture turns to a thin emulsion.
  5. Add the Pecorino and/or Parmigiano Reggiano the one of your choice and give a last stir. Now it's ready to plate and serve immediately with some extra grated cheese to taste.
Spaghetti
Spaghetti Mixed
Spaghetti Alla Carbonara

Yes, spaghetti or rigatoni pasta shape makes carbonara a simple recipe and yet very tasty. Another easy spaghetti recipe I like to make that you can try is spaghetti alla puttanesca with olives and anchovies.


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