The Only Carbonara Recipe You Need
I feel the intense urge to justify why my carbonara is the only carbonara you need to make. But that would be a lie. As long as you emulsify your sauce properly & use a good parmesan and loads of black pepper then you'll probably enjoy your carbonara experience. But then why would I entitle this recipe "The Only Recipe"? Well, it's because it's true. I can't tell you how many times I look up recipes to popular dishes because I always forget exactly how to make them, and then I am disappointed because I couldn't find that one recipe I used that went down so well with everyone, and now this version is just a little lacklustre. This recipe will always serve you well and you wont' need another one. If you want a richer sauce? That's in the notes. If you want to use a different type of pork? That's in the notes. You get it, you don't need another recipe.
Carbonara is often demonised for being so unhealthy, and I get it, the pork fat of it all. But, and here's a little secret, a good bolognese or ragu is going to be steeped in fat too... and it's going to take you a million more minutes. Exaggeration be damned, I said it and I meant it. Quick break whilst I google how long a million minutes is.
That's nearly 23 months. Perhaps that is unfair to bolognese.
Don't be intimidated by the completely diagnosable scrambled-egg-nophobia nor the protracted amounts of pork fat that come with a carbonara. I have figured out the secret sauce to this not-so-secret sauce is confidence. You take that pan off the heat, you confidently & vigorously toss your pasta with the egg/parm/pasta water mixture, and you've won.
120g of Guanciale or Pancetta
320g of Spaghetti
2 egg yolks
1 cup of parmesan
Cook sliced Guanciale with olive oil over a medium heat
Meanwhile cook pasta until just before al dente (pasta will continue to cook in the sauce)
Mix together the eggs and egg yolks with the parmesan and a lot of black pepper (about 1-2 tbsps)
Remove Guanciale from the pan when crispy and add your pasta to the fat with 1/4 cup of pasta water
Whisk 1/4 - 1/3 cup of pasta water into the egg mixture
Take the pan off the heat and stir through most of the Guanciale. Then thoroughly stir through the egg yolk mixture with another 1/4 cup of pasta water (or enough to reach your desired sauce consistency)
Finish with the rest of the Guanciale and some more parmesan and black pepper!
For a richer sauce use a ratio of 3 egg yolks and 1 egg and an extra 30 grams of Guanciale
If you want to use bacon instead of Guanciale I would use slightly more bacon to get the same amount of fat out of it. I have a bacon carbonara recipe here (hardly much different to this one but is richer and includes chives & crispy bacon on top).