Advertisements

Let's Dish With Linda Lou

Sharing My Recipes, My Life, And The Food Tale Of Two Cities

Pasta Carbonara

2016-05-01 17.44.35

A perfect match made in heaven, are peas and pancetta. My pasta carbonara highlights those two perfectly. One of this dishes main ingredients is freshly cracked black pepper. From what I understand, many years ago, this dish got it’s name from woodcutters who made charcoal for fuel. Those men would come home dirty and black from a hard days work. Therefor the black pepper in this dish represented just that.

Yields: 4 servings
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 12-15 minutes

Ingredients:
2 boxes of Gemelli ( or 1 pound of spaghetti)
1 package of thawed frozen peas
1/4 pound of diced pancetta
1 finely diced shallot
1 tablespoon of olive oil
1 large clove of minced garlic
1/4 cup of dry white wine (optional)
4 whole eggs plus, 1 yolk
2 cups of grated Parmesan cheese ( reserve 1/4 cup back to top serving dishes)
1 pinch of Kosher salt to taste ( handful of Kosher salt for pasta water)
3 tablespoons of fresh finely chopped flat leaf Italian parsley
1 tablespoon of fresh cracked black pepper

Directions:
First, place a 6 quart pot on the stove filled with water, and turn the heat up to medium high. This will allow time to prepare the ingredients for the dish while waiting for the water to boil.

Have ready, a whole package of thawed frozen peas in a bowl.

Dice up the pancetta and add it to a large, deep sided, and cold saute pan with olive oil. Do not turn the heat on just yet.

Next, grind up 2 cups of Parmesan cheese in a food processor. Transfer the grated cheese to a bowl and set aside. Note: reserve 1/4 cup back for adding to the top of the served dish.

In another bowl, crack 4 eggs and one egg yolk and beat them together with 1 tablespoon of fresh cracked black pepper. Measure out 1/4 cup of dry white wine, and 1 large garlic clove minced. Once all the ingredients are ready it’s time to make the dish.

Turn the large saute pan with the pancetta and olive oil on to medium heat. Start to render down the pancetta.  Throw a handful of Kosher salt into the pot with the boiling water. Add in the pasta of you choice, giving it a big stir, and follow the cooking time according to the box.

Anywhere from 7-10 minutes the pancetta should be rendered down and crispy. Transfer the pancetta to a plate line with paper towel.  Drain off all but 3 tablespoons the pancetta fat in the pan. If you don’t think you have that much, you can add a little olive oil.

This process goes fairly quickly. Pan still on medium heat, next, add in the minced garlic, diced shallot, and the wine. Using a wooden spoon, and while shallots and garlic are sauteing, scrap up all those delicious pancetta bits that are trapped in the bottom of the pan. Let that liquid bubble up for about a minute until the alcohol has cooked out.

To the pan, using one of those large colander spoons, transfer the pasta into the pan. Next, return the cooked pancetta to the pan. Make sure to coat the all pasta with the pancetta fat, wine and garlic that has remained in the pan. Note: if the pasta seems a little to dry and sticking together, add in a little olive oil to loosen it up.

At this point, add back in the crispy pancetta, along with the peas ( the heat will warm the peas through), and egg mixture. Using tongs, toss all this though, while still over the heat, until eggs are barley set. Turn the heat off, but keep the pan on the burner. Quickly add in the grated Parmesan cheese and fresh chopped parsley. Toss those ingredients through then remove from the hot burner. This dish is best served hot. Don’t forget about adding more cheese to the top of your dish!

Advertisements
Leave a comment »

Pasta Carbonara Souffle

2015-05-01 17.06.16 2015-05-01 17.06.19

Eggs and bacon mixed with pasta is a dish that dates back for many years. At least that’s what I’ve been told. Making Pasta Carbonara into a casserole, even better. Let’s get started.

2015-05-01 13.32.21 2015-05-01 13.36.14

2015-05-01 13.59.53 2015-05-01 14.07.34

I start  with a small cold saute pan with a tiny bit of olive oil in it. I have some diced Pancetta that I’m going to render the fat out. Using a slotted spoon I just remove the Pacetta and place it on to a plate lined with a paper towel to remove any extra grease. I’ll come back to this when I’m ready to add it into the dish.

2015-05-01 14.21.35

I have a here a deep casserole dish the I’ve buttered really well. First I want to add some egg whites to the sauce to make it in the style of a souffle. I’m going to do this by hand because it’s not a lot of egg whites and a little exercise for my arms couldn’t hurt.

2015-05-01 13.38.37 2015-05-01 13.46.48

I have some egg whites in a clean glass bowl that I’m whipping up into soft peaks. I’m looking for them to be nice and frothy. As they start to become frothy but not quite to soft peaks stage, I add in a pinch of cream of tartar to stabilize them. This just makes sure they won’t fall or deflate. Now for the sauce for this delicious dish.

2015-05-01 14.12.40 2015-05-01 14.13.392015-05-01 14.16.382015-05-01 14.17.122015-05-01 14.18.172015-05-01 14.18.072015-05-01 14.19.192015-05-01 14.28.01

In a large pot I’ve added some butter, on med heat, that I’m melting. Once that’s melted I add in the flour (optional, gluten free flour). Whisk that together until the raw flour has combined well with the butter. Next, I’m adding in milk and half and half, continuously whisking. At this point I’m also adding in Kosher salt, black pepper, freshly grated nutmeg, Still whisking, the milk sauce is starting to thicken. Once it comes to a boil, turn the heat off because that’s as thick as it’s going to get. I remove the pot from the heat, then add in some grated Parmesan cheese. Switch to a spatula and stir in the grated cheese. Now, I fold in the egg whites.

2015-05-01 14.29.002015-05-01 14.29.54

I also add in some finely chopped Italian flat leaf parsley, (dried it fine too). You want to fold the egg whites very gently into the cheese sauce. For the pasta, follow the directions on the box. Cooking in salted boiling water but, under cook it a bit from what in box instructions say. It will finish cooking while it’s baking in the casserole.  By the time the dish comes out of the oven, the pasta will be perfectly cooked.

2015-05-01 13.59.51

For this recipe, I’m using a regular cork screw style pasta, but, I’m posting this recipe under the “gluten free” category, because it’s equally delicious with substituting gluten free flour, and gluten free pasta for this dish. I drain the pasta in a large colander. I rinse the pasta under some cold water to stop the cooking process for just a minute before adding it into the casserole dish. Once the pasta is somewhat cooled, it’s time to put this together.

2015-05-01 14.42.52 2015-05-01 14.49.53

2015-05-01 14.52.11 2015-05-01 15.55.35

First goes half the cooled pasta, then half of the cheesy souffle sauce. On top of that I sprinkle half of the cooked Pancetta. I repeat this process one more time. Now for the topping. I add some finely shredded Italian cheese blend, a little more of the grated Parmesan cheese, and dot the top all over with some unsalted butter. Place into a 375 degree oven for around 25-30 minutes. Do not open the oven for the first 20 minutes. You want the dish to rise beautifully as a souffle should.

2015-05-01 17.06.19 2015-05-01 17.06.16

Yields: 6-8 servings
Total Cooking Time: 1 hour
Oven Temp: 375 degrees
Ingredients:
1/4 pound of Pancetta diced
1 box of short cut pasta or substitute gluten free pasta (slightly under cooked, rinsed, and cooled)
3 cups of whole milk, room temperature
1 cup of half and half, room temperature
1/2 a stick of unsalted butter, plus 3 tablespoons diced for the top
1/2 cup of flour or substitute gluten free flour
5 ounce container of grated Parmesan cheese ( reserve 1/4 cup for topping)
4 egg whites beaten to soft peaks
1/4 teaspoon of cream of tartar
1/4 teaspoon of fresh grated nut meg
1 teaspoon of Kosher salt
1 tablespoon of black pepper
1/4 cup of finely chopped Italian flat leaf parsley plus 2 tablespoons for garnish on the top (dried is fine too)
1- 8 ounce package of the Italian blend shredded cheese
Directions:
First butter a deep dish casserole dish. Cook of the Pancetta and let rest on a paper towel to drain off any excess grease. Prepare the egg whites to soft peaks in a bowl. On med heat, make the white sauce using the flour, milk, Kosher salt, pepper, and nut meg, Off the heat add in the Parmesan cheese. Fold in the egg whites with the finely chopped Italian flat leaf parsley. First layer half the cooled pasta into the casserole dish. Spoon on half the souffle sauce all over the first layer of pasta, then sprinkle with half the cooked diced Pancetta. Repeat this process once more. Top with the shredded Italian cheese blend, Parmesan cheese, and  finallydot the top with diced butter. Bake at 375 degrees for about 25-30 minutes or until the top is bubbly and golden brown. Do not open oven door for the first 20 minutes of cooking. When the casserole comes out of the oven garnish with some more parsley and let rest for about 15 minutes or so, giving it time to set.

1 Comment »

%d bloggers like this: