Pasta Carbonara is a recipe that is a typical Roman pasta dish. I have to tell you it is one of my favorites. For many years, I was almost scared to make it at home. I had always eaten out at restaurants in Italy and never thought to make it in my own kitchen. Then on one visit to Italy I had the best carbonara…a pasta dish that dreams are made of…at a local restaurant in Montalcino called Il Giardino. I knew after that I could not wait to come back to Italy to have it. I needed to make this on my own.
Pasta carbonara is traditionally served with spaghetti. But being that I have been sharing dishes that are easy to make for your Valentine, I decided to make it with mezze rigatoni. Because that is what my hubby likes. So the point here is to make it your own and use what you like.
Also, if you can’t find guanciale (which is an italian cured meat), you can use pancetta. But guanciale is more authentic and in my opinion much better!!
Trust me if you make this dish for your love they will love you forever, because not only is it easy and delicious but it is from the heart!!
3 oz. or ¾ Cups of Guanciale- Diced into tiny cubes/thin small strips
3 Egg Yolks
¾ Cups Freshly Grated Pecorino Romano, plus more for serving
¼ tsp. Salt
8 oz. (1.2 lb) of Pasta- I use Mezze Rigatoni
Boil water and then salt it generously. This is a timely dish so while it is boiling, heat a frying pan and add in the guanciale on low to medium heat. Cook until crispy (about 8 to 10 minutes).
Whisk the egg yolks and Pecorino in a bowl. Add in the black peppers. Mix again.
When the guanciale is just about fully cooked and crispy, boil your pasta. Shut off the heat from the pan with the guanciale. You want the pan to be warm but not hot. Then the egg will scramble when you are ready to add them and thats not what you want.
Reserve about a cup of the pasta water once it is almost cooked. Add about 2 tbsp. to the egg yolk mixture to temper it. Whisk well. Put the rest of the pasta water to the side.
Drain the pasta (you want it to be al dente) and add to the frying pan. Combine with the guanciale and then add in the yolk mixture. Combine well and gradually add the pastawater to loosen the sauce. You want it to be silky and creamy but not too loose of a sauce and definitely not dry!
Serve topped with more grated Pecorino.