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Spaghetti Carbonara
The Spaghetti Carbonara recipe is a traditional one from Lazio, where Italy's capital Rome is situated.
carbonara recipe || italian dinner
Course Main Dish
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 10 minutes
Servings
people
Ingredients
Course Main Dish
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 10 minutes
Servings
people
Ingredients
carbonara recipe || italian dinner
Instructions
  1. Put a pot of salted water on the fire
  2. Meanwhile, remove the rind from the pig cheek lard
  3. Slice the pig cheek lard into strips
  4. Pour the pieces into a non-stick pan and brown for about 15 minutes over medium heat (don't burn them!)
  5. Dip spaghetti into the boiling water
  6. While pasta is cooking, put the egg yolks into a bowl
  7. Add most of the Roman pecorino
  8. Season with most of the black pepper
  9. Mix the bowl with a hand whisk
  10. Dilute the bowl with a spoon of boiling water and mix a little more. Note: do this passage always after dipping spaghetti in the water
  11. Remind to watch out the pig cheek lard. Please don't send us photos with burned stripes. It hurts
  12. Drain spaghetti al dente directly in the pan with the bacon and sauté it briefly
  13. Remove from the heat and pour the egg mixture and pecorino into the pan. Be sure that the temperature doesn't cook at all the sauce. It's the key step to have a creamy sauce, not pieces of an omelette in your dish.
  14. Serve it using the rest of Roman pecorino and black pepper as you like
Recipe Notes

Even if the tradition tells us that the spaghetti carbonara recipe is from Rome, the origins of the dish are uncertain. Of course, that hypothesis is the most reliable.

Carbonara starts to be mentioned after the liberation of Rome in 1944 with bacon brought by Allied troops in the Roman markets. This explains why in carbonara, unlike other sauces such as amatriciana, bacon and pig cheek are often reported as equivalent ingredients by the book. Of course, if you ask people from Rome, they would tell you: «Carbonara with bacon instead of pig cheek is a blasphemy». In Lazio, they really love pig cheek, and in fact in amatriciana sauce, for example, pig cheek is a forced choice.

During the Second World War, the American soldiers who arrived in Italy gave to cooks the idea to combine ingredients such as eggs, pig cheek or bacon, and spaghetti. When Rome was freed, the food shortage forced creativity to find great solutions only with military rations. In this context, another masterpiece happened: spaghetti carbonara recipe.

Another hypothesis assigns the intention to the charcoal burners («carbonari» in dialects from the center of Italy) in Abruzzo, near L'Aquila. Craftsmen used to prepare it using ingredients that are easy to find and preserve. In fact, to make charcoal it was necessary to monitor it for a long time and therefore it was important to have the necessary supplies. In this case, carbonara would be the evolution of the dish called «cacio e ova» (cheese from sheep's milk and eggs, in the Abruzzo dialect), usually brought by craftsmen to their haversack and consumed with their hands. The pepper was already used in good quantity for the preservation of the bacon, fat or lard used in place of the oil, too expensive for the charcoal burners.

A last hypothesis would trace the origin of the recipe to Neapolitan cuisine. 1837 Ippolito Cavalcanti's theoretical-practical cuisine book describes as normal, in the preparation of some dishes, to use ingredients found in carbonara: a beaten egg, cheese and pepper added after cooking. It is a technique commonly used today in dishes such as pasta and peas, pasta with zucchini, egg-tied tripe and meat stew with peas.

One Comment

  • erotik says:

    This is a good tip particularly to those fresh to the blogosphere. Simple but very accurate information?Many thanks for sharing this one. A must read article! Genvieve Vasili Myna

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