Spaghetti Carbonara with Mushrooms
with a pear salad
Spaghetti carbonara isn't just for Italian restaurant menus. You'll be shocked at how easy it is to make this hearty Italian staple for an easy weeknight dinner. And with pear season upon us, this pear salad is a sweet way to enjoy this fruit with dinner.
- Balsamic vinegar - 1 1/2 Tbsp
- Dijon mustard - 1 tsp
- Olive oil - 3 Tbsp
- Pears - 1 , sliced
- Mixed greens - 1/4 lb
- Blue cheese or gorgonzola (optional) - 2 oz
- Nuts of choice for salad - 1/4 cup
Spaghetti Carbonara with Mushrooms:
- Bacon - 8 strips , chopped
- Mushrooms - 1 lb , sliced
- Spaghetti - 3/4 lb
- Eggs - 2
- Cream or half and half - 1/2 cup
- Parmesan cheese - 1/4 cup , grated
- Sherry or marsala (optional) - 2 Tbsp ((These are Mediterranean cooking wines. If you can't find them, no big deal))
- Bacon or Pancetta / Mushrooms - Prep as directed. (Can be done up to 3 days ahead)
- Make dressing - Whisk together balsamic, mustard, and oil. Season to taste with salt & pepper. For more vinaigrette ideas, check out this video. (Can be done up to 5 days ahead)
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- Whisk eggs in a bowl big enough to accommodate the cooked pasta. Add in cream or half and half and parmesan. You will transfer hot pasta straight into this bowl and the heat from the pasta cooks the eggs and forms the sauce.
- Bring a saucepan of water to boil. Salt heavily (that water should taste like the ocean!) and add spaghetti. Cook until al dente, tender but not soggy. Transfer hot pasta straight into egg mixture and toss to coat.
- While pasta is cooking, heat a skillet over medium-high heat. Add bacon or pancetta, and saute until browned, ~3 minutes. Add in mushrooms with marsala or sherry (if using) and a dash of salt. Saute until softened, ~ 3 minutes. Season to taste with salt and pepper and then transfer to the bowl of pasta. Toss to mix.
- Slice pears. Toss vinaigrette together with greens, pears, blue cheese, and nuts of choice. Enjoy with your hot and creamy carbonara!