Author Notes: I try to use up what is in the cupboards and the freezer. I buy Tiroler Speck for this and as it comes in big slabs and guanciale is hard to come by here. I usually freeze quite a bit of it and make four of five portions of this. However, regular chunky fatty bacon works just as well. Having two kids at home, we have a large quantity of dried pasta at hand at all times. When I have little time in the office to cook, I always fall back onto this recipe. It is quick, easy and super delicious. —david
Prep time: 5 min
Cook time: 20 min
grams High quality spaghetti
Grated pecorino or parmesan
grams Tiroler Speck or guanciale or bacon, diced
pinch Cracked black pepper
Salt to taste
- Start by preparing your ingredients in advance. You don't want to leave this to the last second or you risk overcooking the egg or pasta in the end. Grate some of the cheese into a bowl, set aside. Lightly whisk the egg and egg yolk in a small bowl, add a bit of the grated cheese and a pinch of salt and set aside. Measure your pasta and set aside. Measure the speck, dice it and set aside.
- Bring a large pot of heavily salted water to a rolling boil.
- For the cheese crisp: Heat a frying pan to medium heat and add a bit of the grated cheese in a nice little circle. Melt the cheese until a mesh has formed. Gently pry it out of the pan and carefully set aside the crisp. Wipe the pan and put it back onto medium heat
- Add the speck to a frying pan and sautee on medium heat, slowly, until the fat has rendered. Make sure it dosn't brown. Reserve a few bits for the decoration.
- The water should be boiling by now, so add the spaghetti. The ones I use cook for about 10 minutes.
- Just before the Spaghetti are done, add butter to the rendered Speck, then add the pasta straight from the water into the frying pan. Coat the pasta with the fat from the speck and butter and let a little of the pasta water steam off.
- Take the pan off the heat, then using a wooden spoon, swirl the pasta in the pan, add the egg mixture and continue to swirl in the pan. You are trying to emulsify the egg with fat and water in the pan. Make sure to keep this going until a thick creamy sauce has formed. Be careful, we don't want this to overcook into scrambled eggs.
- Using a meat fork, take the pasta out of the pan, place on a warm plate, add the reserved speck on top, sprinkle the cracked black pepper on top and place the cheese crisp.
- This recipe was entered in the contest for Your Best Pantry Pasta