Spaghetti carbonara - step-by-step instructions




The manifesto of a proper carbonara sounds revolutionary: Not even egg yolks (only whole eggs), nor pancetta should properly be in the pot, no butter, no oil... We’ve all been doing it wrong all these years: proper carbonara is made with whole eggs, pepper, guanciale (cured pork jowl) and pecorino romano.

You will need

A big pot (or 2*), a frying pan, a colander, a ladle (whose volume you approximately know) and a wide (preferably metal) bowl

Your pack serves 2 as a main and contains:

1. A bundle of spaghetti

2. Guanciale (cheek-&-jowl bacon), already cut into lardons

3. Bright yellow Italian eggs mixed with pecorino Romano and lots of pepper


*the way we make the dish is to fry the guanciale while the pasta is cooking, then mix the pasta with the guanciale and its rendered grease, then mix it with the cheesy eggs, then gently cook it bain marie over boiling water until it jut thickens. To do this, you need either 2 pots (so when the pasta has boiled you pour the water into the second pot), or a pasta basket (so you can lift the pasta from the boiling water, without pouring the water away)

Have ready a big pot of well salted (10g/l) boiling water

  • Put the spaghetti on to boil. The ones we supply take 8 minutes to cook
  • The guanciale is best fried in a dry, very hot pan. It will smoke quite a lot and I like to get it brown and crispy on the outside but still a bit gooey in the middle. This takes 3-4 minutes over a high heat.
  • Drain the pasta, reserving all the water – put the water back on to simmer
  • Add the pasta to the guanciale in the frying pan, along with a ladle of about 100ml (more or less) of the pasta water. Cook together until the sauce (fat) kind of emulsifies and coats the pasta (no loose water left in the pan)
  • Transfer the bacony pasta to a wide bowl
  • Add another 100ml of the hot pasta water to the egg mixture, stir to combine and add the lot to the pasta. Stir again
  • Set the bowl over the simmering water and stir until thickened – you want the egg to get to the texture of luscious double cream (not be runny, not be scrambled)
  • Serve piping hot – this is very delicious.

ENJOY! This is a velvety, porcine feast. It is best with a rich or mineral, coarse or earthy but above all red wine – something bright to cut the fat or deep to wrestle with it. Cesanese or Nero Buono would be buono.

ALLERGENS: all packs prepared in a mixed kitchen, we cannot guarantee the absence of any allergen. All packs of this dish contain gluten, eggs and ewe’s milk cheese.