Salute, dinero y amor

Pasta Cabonara

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Pasta Cabonara

Homemade food is a wonderful thing. Ever date someone else because their mother was just such a good cook? The thing is, there often isn’t time to cook something fancy during the course of a normal day: work, school, and children get in the way. Also when cooking for others, tastes don’t always match up.

Well, here’s a good recipe that sates even the most picky of eaters, yet is pretty easy to do. Normally fresh ingredients are emphasized in a recipe but not here. When it comes to a bacon and cheese pasta, “fresh” is not a huge concern. If you want to indulge yourself, there aren’t a lot of other options that say “exotic,” yet mouth-stuffing good.

To make Pasta Carbonara you need a few ingredients: one pound of linguine pasta, six ounces of parmesan cheese, half a pound of bacon, two eggs, 1/2 a cup of heavy cream and black pepper. To round the whole event off is a bottle of white wine, a cup for the carbonara and the rest for whatever follows.

Be advised: I am pretty liberal with my ingredients, stretching the wine measurements as well as the cream and butter, which all serve to make the sauce a little more pronounced. If you want to stay true to the venerable Alfredo Viaci’s recipe, then refer to the measurements given at the bottom of the article and ignore mine.

From the aforementioned Alfredo Viaci’s Cookbook, this recipe is a smorgasm of delights. First you want to fry up the bacon, making sure it’s nicely crisp with no greasy residue Put the bacon on a paper towel, ensuring the residual fat is absorbed. Now I know that normally this practice would be considered lunacy; however, in this case with the amount of butter, cream and cheese going into the dish ,excess bacon fat only detracts from the flavor.

While the bacon is sizzling happily away in the pan, start boiling the water in a large pot. Toss a pinch of salt and a dash of olive oil in with the water. The salt will speed up the boiling of the water and the olive oil will ensure the pasta doesn’t stick together.

Next let’s break some eggs. The recipe only calls for two egg yolks, so after separating the whites save them for tomorrow morning, for the egg white omelet you’ll have to balance out the Pasta de Indulgence.

Once your water is at a rolling boil, drop your pasta into the pot. You will know that the linguine is al dente using a simple trick. Throw a hot handful of pasta against the wall; if roughly half sticks, it is ready. Or you can time the pasta if you don’t want to show off your second degree burns tomorrow, though it’s not quite as bad ass.

Have the butter ready? Throw that in a large sauce pan on medium-high heat along with the wine. After giving the wine time to burn off the alcohol, in goes the al dente pasta. Stir quickly; you want to make sure its completely coated.

Embrace your inner blender for this next step to guard against any clotting. Taking the cream and egg yolks, stir them into the sauce pan mixture making sure that none of it clumps together. I find that blending the cream and eggs beforehand can help ensure a smoother blending process.

Here comes the fun part. Take the gobs of crisp bacon and crumble them up into small pieces over the pasta. Mix the bacon in well.

Now it’s time to take the grated parmesan and black pepper and liberally coat the pasta. It should look like a salt and pepper hairstyle a la George Clooney. Take care to really cover the entire bowl. Then stir one last time, and you are ready to serve.

When serving the carbonara, the leftover white wine (if any remains) will pair well with the dish. And lastly, to add a touch of rustic familiarity with the culture you are
consuming tonight, raise a glass and say, “Salud, dinero e amore, ” which is Italian for health, money and love, though not necessarily in that order. Then, feast!

If you don’t have any of the listed ingredients at hand, this recipe should cost around $25 to $30. The most expensive part of the dish is easily the wine, but it’s not something you need to break the bank for. A $10 Pinot Gingio is fine.




1/4 pound bacon

1 pound spaghetti or linguine

6 tablespoons butter

1/2 tablespoon white wine

2 egg yolks

1/3 cup heavy cream

3/4 cup grated parmesan cheese

Salt and freshly ground black


Serves aprox. 6