TOTAL TIME: 40 min
Prep: 20 min
Inactive Prep: --
Cook: 20 min
 
YIELD: 4 servings
LEVEL: Intermediate

ingredients

  • Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 6 medium green and yellow zucchini
  • 1 pound penne
  • 4 large free-range or organic egg yolks
  • 1/2 cup heavy cream
  • 2 good handfuls freshly grated Parmesan
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • Olive oil
  • 12 thick slices pancetta or lean bacon, cut into chunky pieces
  • A small bunch fresh thyme, leaves picked and chopped, flowers reserved (if you can get hold of flowering thyme)
  • Optional: a few zucchini flowers
recipe tools
  • COMMENT ON THIS PROJECT

        

    Sign in

    All fields are required.

    E-mail Address:

    Password:

    Remember me on this computer

    Signing in

    Please enter your email address and we will send your password

    E-mail Address

    Your password has been sent and should arrive in your mailbox very soon.

    Not a member?

    Sign up for My Cooking Channel to share photos, show off your style, and connect to an enthusiastic and helpful community.

    It's free and easy.

  • Print Recipe

Directions

Carbonara is a classic pasta sauce made with cream, bacon and Parmesan and is absolutely delicious. Try to buy the best ingredients you can, as that's what really helps to make this dish amazing. I'm using a flowering variegated variety of thyme but normal thyme is fine to use. When it comes to the type of pasta, you can serve carbonara with spaghetti or linguine, but I've been told by Italian mammas (who I don't argue with!) that penne is the original, so that's what I'm using in this recipe.
Before you start cooking, it's important to get yourself a very large pan, or use a high-sided roasting pan so you can give the pasta a good toss.

Put a large pan of salted water on to boil. Halve and then quarter any larger zucchini lengthwise. Cut out and discard any fluffy middle bits, and slice the zucchini at an angle into pieces roughly the same size and shape as the penne. Smaller zucchini can simply be sliced finely. Your water will now be boiling, so add the penne to the pan and cook according to the package instructions.

To make your creamy carbonara sauce, put the egg yolks into a bowl, add the cream and half the Parmesan, and mix together with a fork. Season lightly with salt and pepper and set aside.

Heat a very large frying pan (a 14-inch is a good start - every house should have one!), add a good splash of olive oil and fry the pancetta or bacon until dark brown and crisp. Add the zucchini slices and 2 big pinches of black pepper, not just to season but to give it a bit of a kick. Sprinkle in the thyme leaves, give everything a stir, so the zucchini is coated with all the lovely bacon-flavored oil, and fry until they start to turn lightly golden and have softened slightly.

It's very important to get this next bit right or your carbonara could end up ruined. You need to work quickly. When the pasta is cooked, drain it, reserving a little of the cooking water. Immediately, toss the pasta in the pan with the zucchini, bacon and lovely flavors, then remove from the heat and add a ladleful of the reserved cooking water and your creamy sauce. Stir together quickly. (No more cooking now, otherwise you'll scramble the eggs.)

Get everyone around the table, ready to eat straightaway. While you're tossing the pasta and sauce, sprinkle in the rest of the Parmesan and a little more of the cooking water if needed, to give you a silky and shiny sauce. Taste quickly for seasoning. If you've managed to get any zucchini flowers, tear them over the top, then serve and eat immediately, as the sauce can become thick and stodgy if left too long.

"Our agreement with the producers of "Jamie at Home" only permit us to make 2 recipes per episode available online. Food Network regrets the inconvenience to our viewers and foodnetwork.com users"

COMMENT ON THIS PROJECT

    

Sign in

All fields are required.

E-mail Address:

Password:

Remember me on this computer

Signing in

Please enter your email address and we will send your password

E-mail Address

Your password has been sent and should arrive in your mailbox very soon.

Not a member?

Sign up for My Cooking Channel to share photos, show off your style, and connect to an enthusiastic and helpful community.

It's free and easy.

Review This Recipe

You must be logged in to review this recipe.

5

Newest Ratings and Reviews

Read all 4 reviews

  • on March 12, 2012

    Flag

    This recipe is heavenly! The zucchini taste absolutely amazing in here. I've never tasted a recipe where it is better.

    people found this review Helpful.
    Was this review helpful to you? Yes | No
  • on October 31, 2011

    Flag

    This is the BEST recipe I have ever tried for pasta carbonara. Jamie has mastered it with great success. BRAVISIMO!!! Diane DiCarlo

    people found this review Helpful.
    Was this review helpful to you? Yes | No
  • on August 22, 2011

    Flag

    Great Dish! I started making this when the FoodNetwork was running Jamie's shows. I'm glad to see the Cooking Channel pick up his series. I've made this dish many times, including once from memory when we were with friends on vacation. I've always gotten oohs and ahhs when I make it.

    people found this review Helpful.
    Was this review helpful to you? Yes | No
Advertisement

On TV

*ALL TIMES EASTERN
ON AIR
NOW
TONIGHT
10:00
PM

what's hot

Carnival Eats

Get Cooking Channel on your TV.