Thursday, March 3, 2011
Allyn's Crazy Good Carbonara - serves 4 to 6
Ingredients - see note following recipe
Fine sea salt
6 large organic eggs
2 1/2 tsp cornstarch
1 1/2 tbs cold water
1 pound linguine
2 1/2 cups whole organic milk
2 cups freshly grated Parmigiano-Reggiano or Grana Padano cheese, about 4 1/2 oz
1 (4 oz) 1/4 inch thick piece bresaola, cut into 1/2 inch cubes (1 cup)
Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Meanwhile, in a large bowl, lightly beat eggs. In a small bowl, whisk together cornstarch and 1 1/2 tbs cold water.
Cook pasta in the boiling water until al dente. Meanwhile, in a medium saucepan, bring milk to a boil, then whisk in cornstarch mixture. (Watch out for milk because once it boils and you're not watching, it will spilleth over!) Whisking constantly, cook milk mixture until slightly thickened, about 2 minutes; remove from heat.
Whisking, pour about 1/2 cup of hot milk mixture into the bowl with eggs (this is called tempering and you need to do it in a slow pour so that eggs won't scramble). Continue whisking and add egg mixture to remaining milk mixture. Whisk in cheese and 1 tsp of salt.
Drain pasta, then return to pot. Add egg mixture and half the bresaola to hot pasta; toss to combine. Let stand 2 to 3 minutes (pasta will absorb some of the sauce), then toss again. Adjust seasoning, if needbe, then divide among serving bowls. Spoon extra sauce and sprinkle remaining bresaola over the top. Serve immediately.
Note: Bresaola is available at Jimmy's Food Market in Dallas (for my outside of Dallas/Texas readers, check with your high end grocery for availability or Italian market) is air-dried salted beef that has been aged two or three months until it becomes hard and turns a dark red, almost purple colour. It is made from top (inside) round, and is lean and tender with a sweet, musty smell. It originated in Valtellina, a valley in the Alps of northern Italy's Lombardy region.
The word comes from the diminutive of Lombard bresada, "braised".