A nice summery twist on the Italian classic. I find that garden peas add a fresh touch and using prosciutto gives a lighter dish than the classic pancetta which of course you can use if prosciutto is not available.
For the pasta we used a type of orecchiette (meaning little ears). Conventional Italian wisdom would dictate that you use spaghetti or other long pastas for carbonara but having lived in Iraq where good pasta is not always easy to find I can testify that can make carbonara with any pasta at all!
Lastly, if you want to make the dish creamier try adding another egg. Adding cream will defeat the purpose attempting to make a light carbonara, never mind alienating all of the Italians in a 100 mile radius!
Carbonara with Summer Garden Peas, Prosciutto Crudo and Parmesan Shavings
Serves two | Cooking time: 15 minutes
250 grams orecchiette (or other pasta)
100gr garden peas (fresh if available, frozen work fine too)
50 gr Prosciutto Crudo (Italian raw cured ham), ripped into small stringy pieces
50 grams Parmesan shavings
2 normal size eggs
10 grams pine nuts to garnish
One clove of garlic, grated
1 tbsp olive oil
Salt and pepper
- Bring a large pot of water to the boil and add your pasta with a pinch of salt
- When the pasta is a few minutes from being cooked, heat olive oil in another pan and add the garlic and some seasoning. Add the fresh peas for 30 seconds and turn off the heat (if using frozen peas, add to boiling water for 30 seconds before adding to the pan) – you want to leave a bit of bite in the peas so be careful not to overcook.
- Strain the pasta and add to your pan, tossing in the olive oil, garlic and peas.
- Add in the prosciutto and half of the parmesan and mix.
- Add the eggs, mix through the pasta and season with salt and pepper (eggs beaten or unbeaten, it doesn’t really matter if mixed well). Don’t turn on the heat again, you don’t want the egg to cook too much or scramble; the heat of the pasta will be enough to give a creamy finish.
- Serve garnished with some pine nuts and the rest of the Parmesan.