19th Mar 2021
Spice up your classic carbonara dish with a healthy alternative.
Did you think creamy pasta was a thing of the past? Not with this tasty dish! It’s a really quick, easy and delicious dish starring the versatile courgette, and the more herbs you add, the better. A note about the egg yolks: As well as adding some top-quality protein, they’re there to thicken up the sauce. Just be careful not to let them cook for too long, otherwise you’ll end up with scrambled egg carbonara – not ideal!
- 4 courgettes
- 2 tbsp olive oil
- 2 tbsp olive oil
- 2 onions, finely diced
- 3 cloves garlic, finely diced
- 4-5 rashers smoked bacon (streaky works best), thinly sliced (optional)
- 1 punnet (250g) mushrooms, sliced
- 250ml cream
- 60ml white wine or chicken or vegetable stock
- 2 egg yolks
- small bunch of chives, parsley or tarragon, roughly chopped
- Parmesan shavings and extra virgin olive oil, to serve
1 Cut the courgettes with a vegetable peeler or with a spiraliser into noodles. Set aside.
2 Start making the sauce. Heat the olive oil in a large frying pan over a medium heat, add the onion with a generous pinch of salt and cook, stirring often, for 2-3 minutes until starting to soften but not colour.
3 Add the garlic, bacon and mushrooms, and continue to cook for about 3 minutes until everything has softened. Stir in the cream and the wine or stock. Turn the heat down to low.
4 Grab another medium to large frying pan (or a large saucepan), place it over a high heat and quickly fry the courgetti in the olive oil for 1 minute. Set aside in the pan to keep warm.
5 Bring the carbonara sauce just up to the boil, remove from the heat and immediately stir through the egg yolks. Continue stirring continuously until the yolks are thoroughly mixed through the sauce. Season to taste with salt and freshly ground black pepper and stir through the chopped herbs.
6 To serve, make a small mound of courgetti in wide serving bowls. Spoon over the carbonara sauce, then top with Parmesan shavings, a drizzle of extra virgin olive oil and some cracked black pepper.
Vegetarian option: Cook the vegetables without the bacon until softened, then stir in the cream, wine or stock, and 50g grated cheese. Cook the courgetti, then bring the sauce just up to the boil, stirring constantly to ensure that the cheese has melted, then remove from the heat and add the egg yolks.
Extracted from What the Fat? Cookbook by Professor Grant Schofield, Dr Caryn Zinn, and Craig Rodger (Murdoch Books, approx €21). Photography by Todd Eyre Photography.
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