From the May 2017 issue of Southern Living Magazine, there was a recipe for tomato carbonara. As it’s now in prime tomato season in New Jersey tomatoes, I couldn’t resist trying this recipe. My husband could eat pasta seven nights a week, so asking him if he would like to try this recipe was a no brainer.
The recipe calls for fettuccine, bacon or you can use prosciutto or pancetta, multi-colored tomatoes, shallots, garlic, eggs, Parmesan cheese, fresh chives and parsley. I purchased diced pancetta at Wegmans for a recipe I wound up not making, so I already had this on hand. For the produce, I went to Delicious Orchards and purchased heirloom cherry tomatoes (2/$7.50) and picked up some extra shallots ($2.49/lb.). My herbs this summer are growing and looking great thanks to my husband’s care and patience.
I sautéed the pancetta in a non-stick pan until it was crisp. Next, I placed my two pints of heirloom tomatoes to cook until softened. Once that was done, the shallots were added until they and the tomatoes were softened. Garlic was added at the end along with 1 cup of the pasta cooking water (take the water from the pot once the pasta has started to cook) and then removed from the heat.
I removed the pasta when it was molto al dente, meaning undercooked. Once the pasta is added with the other ingredients in the saucepan, egg yolks are added along with a cup of the reserved pasta cooking water. The pasta is returned to the heat where you finish cooking so that the sauce can thicken. Once the pasta is cooked and sauce thickened, you add the pancetta, Parmesan cheese, herbs and seasoning.
The pasta dish was delicious! The combination of the tomatoes, pancetta and herbs gave this pasta a unique flavor. Though it didn't have any cream, the sauce was rich from the addition of egg yolks and the starchy pasta water. My husband thoroughly enjoyed this evening. I even shared a plate with our neighbor who loves anything pasta.
While tomatoes are in season, give this dish a try. It only takes just 30 minutes to prepare.
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A former teacher, shop-a-holic, empty-nester redefining quick, family approved dinners.