Spaghetti alla Carbonara

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It’s slightly funny that National Spaghetti Day falls so close to New Years. So much for those resolutions. I find it a physical impossibility to see Spaghetti alla Carbonara on a menu and not order it even though I’m usually disappointed. My inability to resist has reached all corners of the world and is well documented on Instagram. Common sense would tell most people that a misspelt listing of Spagetee Corbonera on a laminated menu on the rooftop of a backpacker hostel in India is not the wisest choice but still I can’t say no. My search for the holy grail of Carbonaras is never ending. The best in New York is in my opinion at Barbuto and I have a near toddler temper tantrum when they aren’t serving it. My biggest piece of advice when making Carbonara is don’t make it for a crowd. It needs to be eaten immediately and if you’re serving more than three, the first person’s plate is already past its best by the time you’ve served the third. I’ve revised my version to be more authentic (I’m ashamed I used to add cream). Enjoy wholeheartedly – resolutions be damned!


Spaghetti alla Carbonara

Serves 2


½ lb Spaghetti (preferably De Cecco)
3 oz cubed pancetta
3 egg yolks
½ cup of grated Parmesan cheese



1. Start boiling water in a large pot and add a good handful of rock salt.
2. In a bowl whisk together the egg yolks and Parmesan cheese.
3. When the water is boiling, add the spaghetti and cook according to the packet.
4. Meanwhile fry the pancetta in a little olive oil until crisp and add freshly ground pepper to taste.
5. Before draining the pasta, reserve 2 cups of the salty water and set aside.
6. Drain the pasta well and add directly to the frying pan with the pancetta.
7. Turn off the heat, mix in 1/2 cup of the salty water and mix well. Then add the egg mixture and stir vigorously until you have a creamy consistency.
8.Serve immediately with extra Parmesan.


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