Recipe – Spaghetti Carbonara


Sometimes you are in a rush.  You find yourself at home in the evening and running around doing all the things that a person does during the post-work, pre-bedtime hours.  And in my case, it was the week after labor day, the girls were back in school, and the Boy and I were trying to figure out our schedules again.  How would it all work.  We had the girls fed, and finishing a movie they’d started the night before (The Martian – not terrible for kids, since there’s only one f-bomb which requires explanation, a butt, and the rest is mostly science and thrill).  But the boy and I found ourselves at this pre-bedtime hour hungry, and I did what I normally do in this situation.

Actually, that’s not right, because I didn’t throw a Trader Joe’s pizza in the oven.  No – I opened the fridge and looked at what I had.  It wasn’t a lot.  A package of bacon from the corn thing.  Eggs from making the cupcakes.  A small amount of milk, carrots, spinach.  Nothing exciting.  And then I had a brainwave.


Carbonara.  That’s what my mom used to make for an easy weeknight meal all the time.  Some quick googling to find a recipe, and I was set.  True carbonara doesn’t need a lot, and if you’re putting in cream, it’s not real carbonara.  Putting the egg mixture in the spaghetti always scares me a little bit.  What if the heat of the pasta doesn’t cook the egg?  What if I let it sit in the colander too long and it cooled too much?  Will the bacon still be warm?  So the whole thing ends up being a delicate dance back and forth.  There are a few things you can have ready so that the dance is a little less stressful.  It will also help if you’re not trying to take pictures for a blog the way that I was.  Maybe this would have been the time to have a photographic assistant or a sous chef, but when you are me and like to be in control, it’s not the most fun idea.

This carbonara on the other hand…this was a FANTASTIC idea, and one that I’ll probably be making again in the near future.


Spaghetti Carbonara

Yield: 2 servings (I halved the original recipe, and that’s what I’m putting here)


4 ounces spaghetti
1 large egg
1/4 cup freshly grated Parmesan
2 slices bacon, diced
4 cloves garlic, minced (this is the original amount.  More garlic is the right amount always)
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
1 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley leaves (or dried!)


In a large pot of boiling salted water, cook pasta according to package instructions; reserve 1/2 cup water and drain well.

In a small bowl, whisk together eggs and Parmesan; set aside.

Heat a large skillet over medium high heat. Add bacon and cook until brown and crispy, about 6-8 minutes; reserve excess fat.

Stir in garlic until fragrant, about 1 minute. Reduce heat to low.

Working quickly, stir in pasta and egg mixture, and gently toss to combine; season with salt and pepper, to taste. Add reserved pasta water, one tablespoon at a time, until desired consistency is reached.

Serve immediately, garnished with parsley, if desired.

Details: Spaghetti Carbonara from Damn Delicious

1 Comment

  1. Ben says: Reply

    I was going to say if you didn’t mention mom and carbonara you missed an opportunity but you’re good. Also if you want some stress about eggs being cooked when you shouldn’t, Gohan Tomago. Steamed rice, soy sauce, sesame seeds and a raw egg whipped together. Delicious.

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