Foodie Friday: Cheesy Spaghetti alla Carbonara

First Friday of the month:  Mom-Cook / Recipe

We are all pasta lovers here at home. I eat any types of pasta, but the kids have their favorites. My boy and I prefer tomato-based sauces, while the hubby and the girl go for creamy ones.  The spaghetti carbonara is not something I cook as often as the classic spaghetti bolognese because of my personal preference to red sauce.  Cabonara requires good quality cheese to make a really good sauce.  Remember I got boxes of cheese a few weeks back?  Well, the grated parmesan was put to good use to make this creamy sauce.

Carbonara is an Italian peasant's dish, with just a few ingredients to make, but they have to be the best. Unfortunately for me, I don't have access to guanciale - Italian cured pork jowl or cheeks. A commonly used alternative here is our trusty bacon. And one good thing I have is the cheese. I have packs of superb Perfect Italiano grated parmesan, plus I added some Pizza Plus to add more flavor from the trio of cheeses.

This is a very simple pasta to make, but quite tricky to toss and mix. I've watched famous chef Mario Batali cook carbonara on his show before and said that authentic carbonara does not have cream. You only need olive oil, cheese and eggs for the sauce. No garlic, onions, or peas. I've read more interesting takes on the authentic version here. However, some chefs do add a splash of cream.  But I frown upon restaurants that put peas in the carbonara!

For my recipe below, I used butter, some onions, and cream, since I don't want to use more than 1 raw egg in my dish, for safety reasons.  Hence, proportion of cheese, cream, and butter should be adjusted, as this might be too heavy or too creamy for your taste.

Cooked spaghetti
2 tablespoons butter, or olive oil
half white onion, chopped (optional)
100 g bacon, chopped
3/4 cup to 1 cup (250 ml) all purpose cream
1/4 c Perfect Italiano grated Parmesan cheese
1/4 c Perfect Italiano Pizza Plus
pasta water
1 egg

To prepare:
Boil water and cook spaghetti al dente - as instructed in the pack - about 150g-200g uncooked pasta.
Chop bacon and onion
Egg should be in room temperature

To cook:
Over medium heat, sauté onions in butter (or oil) until translucent. Add bacon and cook for a few minutes.
Pour the cream and heat through.
Add the cheeses until melted and well blended with the cream.
Put salt if you wish and add more parmesan to suit your taste.
Toss in the cooked spaghetti by batch - just enough for all the noodles to be coated by the sauce.
Ladle some hot pasta water if sauce is too thick or too little for you. Mix well.
Crack egg over the pasta and remove pan from heat. Toss and mix continuously to avoid egg from curdling.

Serve immediately, with fresh cracked pepper.
Good for 2 to 4.

Have some pasta this weekend! Buon appetito!

Get inspired by Perfect Italiano recipes here.

More dishes to try:
Creamy Salmon & Caviar Pasta
Bacon Zucchini Panini
Polvoron con Queso

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