Some readers have been asking for the recipes that appear in TABLE FOR SEVEN. While I can’t claim Gordon Ramsay status in the kitchen — other than shouting, “You DONKEY!” to Zoe in a passable English accent — I do like to cook, especially when it’s something unhealthy and delicious.
This spaghetti carbonara recipe is featured in the second January chapter in TABLE FOR SEVEN. Pasta is my ultimate comfort food. This dish is starchy, and cheesy, and bacony, and exactly what I crave on terrible, horrible, no good, very bad days.
What can go wrong with pasta, cheese, wine and pancetta? Nothing, that’s what.
For a 2-person serving, here’s what you’ll need:
12 oz spaghetti
1/3 lb. pancetta, diced
2 shallots, diced
1/3 cup white wine
1/3 cup grated pecorino romano
3/4 cup grated parmesan
2 eggs, beaten
Cook the spaghetti, as per the box instructions, until it’s al dente. Drain.
Meanwhile . . .
Saute the pancetta over medium heat until the fat begins to render. Add the shallots, and cook until golden. Then add the wine, and let the whole thing simmer until the liquid is reduced by half.
This will smell delicious. If you have a pug, she will appear and stare at you.
Please, please, please drop some of that fancy bacon on the floor.
Ignoring the dog, add the pasta and, using tongs, toss the spaghetti with the pancetta/shallot mixture.
Then add in the cheese, and toss some more.
Here’s where it gets tricky. Most carbonara recipes say that at this point, you should remove the pan from the heat, add the eggs, and let the heat of the pasta cook the eggs. Then they add all sorts of dire warnings about how the eggs won’t be fully cooked, and there’s a possibility you will contract salmonella, the plague, etc, so if you do, don’t contact their legal department.
I usually leave the pan on the burner, and toss the eggs with the pasta over a low heat. Gordon might not approve, but hey, I’ve also never gotten sick, so I’m okay with that.
Dish out into two shallow bowls, and pepper to taste. You can also add salt to taste, but I find that the pancetta and pecorino romano add enough salt to the dish, so it doesn’t really need more.
Serve and enjoy. With the remaining white wine, of course.