Improv: Spaghetti alla Carbonara

Has a month really gone by since the last Improv Cooking Challenge??? I blame Kellen (or Baby Kellen as his cousins call him)...people were not joking when they told me that time will go by faster than I can even comprehend! The theme for this month is bacon and eggs. My mind went to breakfast immediately, but I ultimately decided to try making carbonara.  Carbonara has been on my "to-do" list for over a year and this presented a perfect opportunity to try it out. There are so many different recipes for this classic pasta dish, but I decided on making Nigella's recipe after seeing rav reviews from other bloggers. Nigella's recipe calls for 2 cups of panchetta, but I only used 1 cup and subbed in a cup of bacon. I could not believe how easy this recipe was and how much we loved the pasta. It made me kick myself for not making it sooner! I think that this recipe would be very easy to use as a base to add any additional ingredients you enjoy as well.

Big thanks go to Kristen of Frugal Antic of a Harried Homemaker for hosting this challenge! Check out her blog and join the fun! Next month is cinnamon and sugar...yum!


1 pound spaghetti
1 cups cubed pancetta rind removed
1 cup chopped bacon
2 teaspoons olive oil
1/4 cup dry white wine
4 eggs
1/2 cup freshly grated Parmesan
1/4 cup heavy cream
 Freshly ground black pepper
Freshly ground nutmeg


Put a large pan of water on to boil for the pasta.

In another large pan that will fit the pasta later, cook the pancetta cubes and bacon in the oil until crispy but not crunchy. Pour over the white wine and let it bubble away so that, after a few minutes, you have a small amount of salty winey syrup left. Take the pan off the heat.

In a bowl, beat together the eggs, Parmesan, cream, and pepper. Cook the pasta according to the packet instructions.

When the pasta is done, remove approximately 1/2 cup of the pasta water before draining. Put the pan with the bacon cubes back on the heat and add the drained pasta, tossing well to coat with the syrupy pancetta and bacon. Take the pan off the heat again and add the eggs and cheese mixture, swiftly tossing everything to mix. Thin with pasta water, if needed. Grind over some more pepper and grate over the nutmeg to serve.

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