Quick Lunch: Fusilli Pasta Carbonara

I love eating pasta carbonara but have not made it in a while as I do not usually have all the ingredients at hand (not something I can just throw together as I don't buy bacon often). Last weekend, I decided to make it for my parents (dad loves pasta too and mum likes anything creamy) so I went to the supermarket to get some streaky pork bacon.

Although cream is not commonly used in Italian recipes (theirs is usually just egg and cheese) however variations outside Italy often use cream and that's the way I like it. Most recipes would ask to use single cream, however it's quite difficult to get hold of this in KL hence I substituted with whipping cream.

Since you do not actually "cook" the eggs for this carbonara sauce, I would suggest that you use pasteurised eggs. You can get this easily from any KL supermarket nowadays. I used fusilli (spiral) pasta as the twists and turns are good for holding the pasta sauce. Alternatively, you can use spaghetti and fettucini.

The mint leaves is an inspiration from one of Jamie Oliver's carbonara recipe, and we had loads handy from our herb garden. I also thought it added some colour and spruced up this pasta dish.

This carbonara sauce is quite light yet creamy at the same time. My parents enjoyed this pasta carbonara tremendously, so I guess I'll be making this again for lunch sometime soon. :)

Fusilli pasta carbonara

Fusilli Pasta Carbonara
Recipe by Baby Sumo
Preparation time: 10 minutes
Cooking time: 15 minutes
Serves 3-4

200g fusilli pasta
2 small eggs, preferably free range or pasteurised
80ml single cream (or whipping cream is fine)
100g streaky bacon, cut into bitesize pieces
1 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
1 garlic clove, finely chopped
125g mushroom (either button or grey/white oyster), sliced thinly
A small handful of parsley, finely chopped (or 1 tsp dried parsley)
2-3 sprigs of mint, washed and dried
Salt and freshly ground pepper
2-3 tbsp of Parmesan

1. In a frying pan, heat the olive oil on medium high heat and add the bacon. Fry the bacon until crisp and remove from heat. Reserve the oil for cooking the mushrooms.

2. Put the mushrooms and garlic in the same frying pan and saute for 2-3 minutes until cooked. Add parsley, season with salt and pepper and remove from heat.

3. Mix cream, eggs, salt and pepper in a small bowl and leave aside.

4. At the same time as cooking the bacon, cook the pasta according to packet instructions in boiling salted water. Remove from heat and place in a large bowl.

5. Add the cream and egg mixure immediately to the pasta, this should be done while pasta is still hot so that the residual heat from the pasta will cook the eggs slightly to give you a silky smooth sauce.

6. Add the bacon and mushrooms and mix well. Garnish with mint leaves and sprinkle with Parmesan cheese. Serve immediately.

Full set of photos can be viewed here. 

*This recipe was featured on Asian Food Channel's Facebook page on 25 June 2012.