This is a great healthy version of TRUE carbonara. Having traveled to Italy several times and taking cooking lessons while there, true carbonara has no cream in it. It is pasta, egg yolks, cheese, pepper and pancetta or prosciutto. This version has leeks in which is not in a true Italian version, but those who are used to America's Italian chain restaurant version of carbonara might like the extra flavor. We leave it out. When I'm in the mood for a healthy version as well as not making homemade pasta, we turn to this.
Spaghetti Carbonara with Leeks and Pancetta
A small amount of the pasta's cooking liquid is whisked into the egg mixture to prevent the eggs from overcooking when added to the hot pasta. This procedure, called tempering, results in a rich, creamy sauce that easily coats the noodles.
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- Calories: 400
- Calories from fat: 29%
- Fat: 12.8g
- Saturated fat: 5.7g
- Monounsaturated fat: 4.2g
- Polyunsaturated fat: 2.7g
- Protein: 22.1g
- Carbohydrate: 49.4g
- Fiber: 2.7g
- Cholesterol: 78mg
- Iron: 3.2mg
- Sodium: 726mg
- Calcium: 350mg
- 8 ounces uncooked spaghetti
- 1/2 cup (2 ounces) finely grated Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese
- 1/4 teaspoon black pepper
- 1/8 teaspoon salt
- 1 large egg
- 1 large egg white
- 1/2 cup chopped pancetta (about 2 ounces)
- 2 cups thinly sliced leek (about 2 large)
- 2 garlic cloves, minced
- 2 tablespoons chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley
- Cook pasta according to the package directions, omitting salt and fat. Drain, reserving 1/4 cup cooking liquid.
- Combine cheese, pepper, salt, egg, and egg white in a small bowl, stirring with a whisk. Gradually add the reserved 1/4 cup cooking liquid to egg mixture, stirring constantly with a whisk.
- Cook pancetta in a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat until crisp. Remove pancetta from pan, reserving drippings in pan; set pancetta aside. Add leek to drippings in pan, and sauté 4 minutes. Add garlic to pan; sauté for 1 minute. Add pasta, cheese mixture, and pancetta to pan; reduce heat, and cook 1 minute, tossing well to coat. Cook 1 minute. Sprinkle with parsley; serve immediately.
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