capellini al la carbonara: spring version

May  5, 2014
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  • Serves approx. 4 to 6
Author Notes

A lighter version of a classic dish from the region surrounding Rome. No eggs and I cook the capellini in vegetable stock to impart more flavor to the finished dish. —cucina di mammina

What You'll Need
  • 1 pound or so of good quality capellini (store-bought or homemade)
  • 1 batch homemade or store-bought vegetable stock, unsalted.
  • 1 to 1 1/2 pounds good quality thick cut smoked applewood bacon or guanciale sliced into strips
  • sea salt
  • cracked black pepper
  • grated parmigiano-reggiano cheese
  • fresh italian flat leaf parsley (chopped finely)
  1. Cook the bacon or guanciale in the oven until golden and crispy. Drain on paper towel and set aside. Be sure to reserve the rendered fat for later.
  2. Once cooled, break the bacon up into smaller pieces or cut the guanciale into small pieces. Place a large stock pot filled with the vegetable stock to boil, if unsalted, add some salt to taste.
  3. When it comes to a boil, add the capellini and carefully stir until all are in the stock and covered. Allow them to cook, stirring so as not to stick until cooked to your taste (al dente is best.)
  4. Remove the cooked capellini and place them in a large sauce pan on the stove top; put the heat on medium-low. Reserve the cooking stock (do not discard.)
  5. Add a healthy drizzle of the rendered cooking fat from the bacon or guan
  6. Now add the cooked bacon or guanciale, a good amount of grated parmigiano-reggiano cheese and a small scoop of the vegetable cooking stock (do not add too much at one time) and carefully stir and mix well over low to medium heat until a sauce forms and coats the strands of pasta.
  7. You need to add more stock if needed, but once all is completely blended be sure to remove from the heat and add plenty of chopped parsley and cracked black pepper.
  8. Serve immediately. Serve immediately.

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