Tried and True: Nigella’s Spaghetti Alla Carbonara

The other night I stood in front of my fridge staring blankly in while thinking “There’s NOTHING to cook”.  It was a nice change from morning closet whine  that echos through my house of “I have NOTHING to wear.”   So, as I stood in front of the fridge wondering if I should just pick up a phone and order some takeout, I had a lightbulb moment – “I have pancetta – heavy cream – eggs – spaghetti – Nigella’s Spaghetti Alla Carbonara!

Confession:  the closest I had ever come to making Spaghetti Alla Carbonara is nuking a Lean Cuisine.  To make it from scratch – are you kidding me. I  don’t have the chops for that.  However, Nigella makes everything look easy – and she’s right.  I could see why she joked that she could eat it straight out of the pan – don’t think I wasn’t tempted.  Added bonus, I even had vermouth from one of my recent additions to the Philly liquor cabinet.  If you don’t have vermouth – don’t fret – just use a dry white wine.   Another thing I was thankful for, that everything fit nicely in my braiser – easy cleanup!

This Spaghetti Alla Carbonara is a recipe that will be tried and tried and tried again.  Give it a shot – you will thank me later.

Nigella’s Spaghetti Alla Carbonara
  • 1 pound spaghetti
  • 2 cups pancetta, cubed
  • 2 teaspoons olive oil
  • ¼ cup dry vermouth
  • 4 eggs
  • ½ cup freshly grated Parmesan
  • ¼ cup heavy cream
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • Freshly ground nutmeg
  1. Bring a large pot of water to boil. When boiling, salt the water.
  2. Add the pasta and cook until al dente. Drain and reserve a ½ cup of the pasta water. Set pasta and pasta water aside.
  3. In a large braiser or pan that will fit the pasta, cook the pancetta in the oil until crisp.
  4. Add the vermouth and let it reduce so that you only have a small bit left. Take the pan off the heat.
  5. In a bowl, beat the eggs, Parmesan, cream and pepper.
  6. Put the pan with the pancetta vermouth mixture back on the heat, adding the drained pasta, tossing well to coat.
  7. Turn off the heat and add the egg and cheese mixture, making sure to toss everything quickly to mix. The last thing you want is scrambled eggs.
  8. Thin with some of the pasta water if needed.
  9. Grind over a little more pepper and add a quick grate of nutmeg.
  10. Enjoy!
Slightly adapted from Nigella Lawson

Lining up the ingredients…

 Spagetti Alla Carbonara-Ingredients

Let the vermouth meld with the crispy pancetta

Spagetti Alla Carbonara-Vermouth

Mixing the egg & cream mixture with the pancetta coated pasta

Spagetti Alla Carbonara-Mixing

Make sure to reserve some pasta water

Spagetti Alla Carbonara-PastaWater

Voila – Spaghetti Alla Carbonara

Spagetti Alla Carbonara-Final

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  1. says

    Oh that dish looks amazing! I'll have to try it out!

    Where in Philly are you? I work in Center City and live in the burbs!
    .-= Jen´s last blog ..Blockbuster Online = FAIL =-.

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