2.17.2011

Carbonara





Just before Christmas I was watching the Martha Stewart Show.  Yes!  I like to catch her show every now and then.  I have to admit I really miss the "pre-prison" Martha and her show.  She actually brought some of the east coast to Utah.  It was like stepping into a food world that I never knew existed.  I loved her style in decor.  I loved the clean look and lines.  She had fresh colors.  Her crafts were a HUGE step above our Mormon Relief Society homemaking craft nights (no offense my dear sisters).  I loved her ideas, even though I'm not a huge crafter.  Martha's ideas were expensive (for me), but classy.  I really grew to like the Martha "ideas".  I even wore a t-shirt and apron that said, "Free Martha".  

Back to my original thought...just before Christmas Martha had Chef Eric Ripert on her show making this dish.  It was simple yet had sophistication.  With the use of purchased creme fraiche it is a little pricey.
We can make our own creme fraiche.   I love the little tang the creme fraiche gives the recipe so I wouldn't substitute it with sour cream.  But if you absolutely have to substitute opt for heavy cream.

Please note this is NOT a low fat meal by any means.  







For the sake of the blog I purchased creme fraiche at my grocery store - ouch!  You will need 2 cups of creme fraiche, bacon, egg yolks, a good quality pasta.  Chef Ripert suggested an eggy Pappardelle.  I love Pappardelle so I went with it.  You can use spaghetti if you prefer.  You will, also, need, chives, Parmesan cheese, salt and pepper.









Bring a large pot of water to a boil oven high heat.








Add salt to the water.  Don't forget!










One thing I really like about this recipe is that there isn't a huge amount of bacon.  I'm not a huge bacon fan.  I know how can I call myself American.  I think it stems to morning sickness!  I leave it there.

Meanwhile, take three strips of bacon, about.








Chop the bacon.








I like small bits of bacon rather than large.








In a large skillet over medium-low heat, cook bacon.








Stir the bacon often.








Cook until crisp.








I added this part because I wanted to drain off some of the bacon fat and keep the bacon crisp.

Remove the bacon from the pan onto a paper towel.  Set aside. Pour off what ever amount of the fat you want to.  I only left a trace.








You will need 1/4 cup chives.








Finely chop the chives.








Set aside.








To the pan that the bacon was cooked in.  Add the creme fraiche.

Look how creamy it is.  I love this stuff.  Also, notice how the creme fraiche immediately begins to melt once it hits the heat.








Before the creme fraiche gets hot, add the egg yolks.








Quickly whisk the egg yolks into the creme fraiche.













Keep whisking.









Bring the sauce to a simmer.








Add salt to taste along with 1 teaspoon of fresh ground pepper.

Let's talk pepper for a minute.  Seriously, I hate canned ground pepper.  I always use freshly ground pepper.  SO if you only have the canned stuff, only use a small amount or your sauce is going to taste of canned black pepper.  Try to change out your pepper and get a pepper grinder.  You food will taste so much better.









I really like this Pappardelle that I found.  It comes in four little nests of pasta.  Cute.








By now the large pot of water should be boiling like crazy.  Drop in the pasta.  This particular pasta cooks pretty fast. It should be ready in just a few minutes.








Back to the sauce.  Add the cooked bacon back into the sauce and stir it around.








Once the pasta is cooked al dente, drain the water and immediately add it to the sauce.












Gently stir the pasta so that is completely covered with the sauce.









Add the chopped chives.








Stir into the pasta.








Add the parmesan cheese.  I like to reserve a bit of the cheese to sprinkle on top of the pasta.








Ugh!  I was ranting to much about the canned pepper that I forgot to add it to the sauce.  

I'm adding it now...it happens....








Serve at once.  Not even kidding on this.  Call the family to dinner and get them around the table, then serve up this warm and creamy pasta dish.  This probably takes about 15 minutes to prepare.  It will serve 4 large servings or 6 small servings.



Carbonara

1/2 cup chopped applewood-smoked bacon
2 cups creme fraiche
2 large egg yolks
1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
Fine sea salt
8 ounces dried tagliatelle (I used Pappardelle)
1 1/2 cups freshly grated Parmesan cheese, plus more for garnish
      1/4 cup thinly sliced fresh chives


Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil over high heat.

Meanwhile, in a large skillet over medium-low heat, cook bacon, stirring, until crisp, about 10 minutes. Add creme fraiche and bring to a simmer. Whisk in egg yolks; season with black pepper and salt.

When water begins to boil, add tagliatelle and cook, according to package directions, until al dente. Drain pasta and add to sauce; stir in cheese and chives; let stand for 1 minute.
Using a meat or carving fork, twirl a quarter of the pasta and place in the center of a bowl. Repeat process three times with remaining pasta. Spoon any remaining sauce over and around pasta and garnish with cheese; serve immediately.


Gotta love Martha.


Coming soon:  How to make creme Fraiche

11 comments:

  1. My daughter-in-law, in UT, put me onto your blog. LOVE your recipes and your writing style. Made the baked oatmeal and it's fabulous! Great pics. Kinda like PW out there in OK. Thank you for all the inspiration.

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  2. Why thank you, Polly. Love PW. That's a HUGE compliment. I hope I can continue to inspire.

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  3. cool pictures! I will cook this right now...

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  4. I love carbonara and will try this recipe, if I can find creme fraiche here. I also loved the baked oatmeal. Thanks.

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  5. Now you can make your own creme fraiche! Sorry it took me so long to post the recipe. I wanted to make sure it worked out well...it did!

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  6. http://imageshack.us/photo/my-images/836/foodw.jpg/

    I took some idea's from your recipe, but I added mushrooms, and detracket the cheese and other pasta. Well take a look at the picture, thanks for the blog! Great recipes. :)

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  7. Penne and mushrooms! What a great idea.

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  8. This looks simply wonderful!! But I have a problem. To use one of you favorite words, I think parmesan cheese taste like crap. God knew what he was doing when he put me in America and not Italy. I would probably be in jail my entire life if I lived in Italy. Anyway, do you know of another cheese that you could substitute for the parmesan? Love your blog and your pictures are fantastic. I want to do a blog but don't know how to put the pictures on the computer as you have done. You are amazing.

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    1. As I read back through this recipe, I realize I did use that work way too much. I apologize. I will correct them...it is what it is...right?
      You could try using Gruyere. What about Pecorino Romano? If you are anti-Italian cheese, you could try Gruyere. My college daughter used Provolone because that is all she had and thought it was great. I hope this helps.

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  9. Hi Janet,
    Well I tried my first recipe tonight and it worked a treat. A testament to a good recipe that it tastes as good as it looks.
    Thanks again.
    Next on my list the tomato pesto tart.

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    1. You're going to love the tomato pesto tart. It's a favorite of mine. I'm so happy your loved the carbonara. How easy was that?

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