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Pasta Carbonara with Cavolo Nero


Serves 2

Ingredients

200g Dried Spaghetti

120g Smoked Bacon, chopped

1 tbsp Olive or Rapeseed Oil

1 Large Onion, finely chopped

120g Cavolo Nero stalks, washed & shredded into thin ribbons

2 Garlic Cloves, crushed

100ml Marsala or Dry White Wine

3 tbsp Crème Fraiche

2 Eggs, whisked

40g Parmesan, freshly grated

Method

1/ In a wide, deep frying pan, toss the bacon in the oil and fry over a medium heat for 10 minutes or so until it is starting to crisp and colour at the edges. Reduce the heat to as low as possible, add the onion and sweat until it is soft and almost melting. The sweetness you get from the long, slow cooking of onions cannot be beaten, so don’t try to rush this step: it will take at least 20 minutes, if not 30, to do it properly. A sheet of damp baking paper over the surface will create a steamy lid that helps the process along.

2/ While the onions are cooking, bring a generous pan of salted water up to a vigorous boil and cook the pasta until al dente. A minute before it is due to be ready, add the shredded cavolo nero and stir to push it under the water. Cook for a mere minute so that it retains a little crunch, then drain the pasta and cavolo nero well, tossing in a drizzle of olive oil. Set aside while you finish the sauce.

3/ When the onions are really soft, turn the heat back up again and add the garlic, frying for just a minute or so until you can smell the aroma wafting up from the pan. Then pour in the Marsala and allow it to bubble away and evaporate. Add the crème fraîche, eggs and most of the Parmesan, reserving a little for sprinkling on top. Season to taste, being generous with the black pepper. Stir thoroughly to mix, then tip in the pasta and cavolo nero, tossing together for a couple of minutes until everything is really hot. Serve in warmed bowls, with the rest of the Parmesan scattered over the top.

Note:

You can substitute the bacon with salmon if preferred,

Steam 120g piece of salmon for 10 mins, flake then add to the carbonara at the end.

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