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Bec’s Quick Carbonara

Image of two white plates with Bec's Carbonara recipe

I made this quick carbonara recipe years ago for an evening meals class. I’ll often make it at home for dinner, and it’s always well-received. Our “Evening meals” classes were all about quick evening meals that could be made with minimal ingredients, that could be prepared quickly and easily, especially after a busy day.

There are two main ways to make a carbonara sauce. First and easiest is with cream, the second way is with eggs. I’m sure that the “correct way” has been argued by Italians everywhere. Don’t tell them what I’ve been doing, because I’ve come up with a third way.🤣🤣🤣

Classes if you are local (Melbourne) or Zooms from anywhere 🙂

Eggs make a wonderful sauce for carbonara, but you must get the timing right. If your pan is too hot, your eggs will scramble. If it is too cold, your eggs will be uncooked, and unsafe to eat.

I’ve added the conventional and Thermomix methods to this post so you can make either, but I’m going to go on to explain how I’ve adapted it for the Thermomix. I know there are loads of you interested in that from what I see and hear in my Facebook Group.

Thermomix Server® with all the ingredients for my quick carbonara.
All the ingredients pre-mixing in the Thermomix Server®

When adapting this recipe to a Thermomix recipe, there are a few things you need to consider. Before I go on to explain, I made this recipe in a TM6 to get some caramelisation (for flavour) by using one of the guided recipes on high heat. I’ve also suggested what you can do if you have a TM5 or TM31, so don’t let it stop you from trying it.

  • The liquid component has to be reduced in the sauce ingredients for the Themomix method. The Thermomix has a partial lid during the cooking process, so it doesn’t reduce in the same way that an open fry pan would. So I’ve adjusted the liquid ratio to compensate.
  • We’re using the Thermomix for ease of use, so I only want to use one TM bowl, to save on cleaning at the end. I start by cooking off the pasta and setting it aside into a Thermoserver to keep it warm. It’s best to add some of the cooking liquor when you do this, so the pasta doesn’t dry out.
  • Thermo servers® hold loads of heat, so the pasta will continue to cook and soak up liquid; if there’s not enough liquid, it will dry out.
Cooked Spaghetti noodles in a Thermoserver.
You can see the pasta starting to dry out already; add some of the cooking liquor to prevent that.

Thermomix and Conventional Recipes

I’ve added the two recipes separately because their ingredient lists are slightly different. Watch my video below, to get a better idea of the steps involved. 😉

YouTube video
Close up image of a white bowl filled with speghetti carbonara

Bec’s Quick Carbonara – Thermomix method

5 from 3 votes

5 stars tells us you love the recipe

becs-table.com.au
Quick and easy Carbonana recipe that can be adapted to suit you and your family.
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 30 minutes
Total Time 40 minutes
Difficulty Medium
Course Dinner, Lunch
Cuisine Italian
Servings 4 Serves
Method Thermomix

Equipment

  • 1 Thermomix

Ingredients
  

  • 1/2 – 1 cup of grated Pecorino or Parmesan
  • 1 litre boiling water
  • 250 g Spaghetti I use Barilla size 5 1/2 a pack for 4 people
  • 1/2 tsp flaked salt or 1/4 tsp of fine salt
  • 1 Tbsp of chopped fresh herbs I used basil
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 120 g Onion cut into 4
  • 150 g Streaky bacon cut into lardons (strips)
  • 20 g olive oil
  • 130 g frozen peas
  • 100 g white wine optional or 100g stock
  • 125 g Philadelphia cream cheese 1/2 block cut into cubes
  • 1 – 2 Tbsp of lemon juice optional

Instructions
 

  • If your cheese isn't grated, do that first. I used the new Thermomix Cutter on fine grate. Although you could use the normal cheese grating function by chopping the Pecorino or Parmesan into small cubes and setting 10 sec/speed 9
  • Next, either boil the jug and add 1 litre of boiling water to the TM bowl or add 1 litre of water and set it to kettle mode at 100°C
  • When the water in the TM bowl is boiling, pop the spaghetti in through the hole in the lid and set for 14 minutes/100°C/reverse speed +.5 Check your pasta pack; it will depend on the thickness of your pasta as to the cooking time. I usually allow 2 minutes less because it will continue to cook further in the Thermo server®.
  • In the meantime, while your pasta is cooking, chop the fresh herbs and place them in your Thermo server® and continue prepping the remaining ingredients.
  • When the time is up from cooking your pasta remove the pasta and place it in the Thermo server® along with 1/2 of the remaining cooking liquid. Pop on the lid to keep warm.
  • I rinsed the Themomix® bowl out with cold water to cool it at this stage.
  • Add the 2 cloves of garlic to the TM bowl and chop for 3 seconds/speed 4
  • Add the onion (cut in 1/4s) and set 4 seconds/speed 6
  • Add the sliced bacon and the olive oil to the TM bowl.
  • Find the Cookidoo recipe "Sauteed Chicken Strips". Set the Thermomix to cook "sauteed chicken strips" That will give you 7 minutes on High heat. If you don't have a TM6 use 10 mins/120°c/reverse speed +1. You won't get the same light caramelisation, but it's the closest.
  • When the time is up add the white wine or stock and frozen peas set the TM for 2 mins/100°C/reverse speed + 1
  • Add the contents of the TM bowl to the Thermo Server® and pop on the lid.
  • While the bowl is still warm add the philadelphia cream cheese and set 20sec/speed 6.
  • Remove the creamed Philly to the Thermo Server® season with salt and pepper, taste and add enough lemon juice to boost the flavours. We're not looking for it to taste of lemon but to add acid and bring out the flavours. Using a pair of tongs or a spatula, mix well to combine everything.
  • Plate up and sprinkle with grated cheese and garnish with herbs if you like.

Notes

In restaurant we would portion 60g of dried pasta per person. I used 1/2 a pack which weighs 250g
Lemon juice will bring up the flavours in the pasta sauce. You don’t want to add so much that you can taste a strong lemon flavour but enough to heighten the flavours.
Close up image of a white bowl filled with speghetti carbonara

Bec’s Quick Carbonara – Conventional Method

5 from 2 votes

5 stars tells us you love the recipe

becs-table.com.au
Quick and easy Carbonana recipe that can be adapted to suit you and your family.
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 30 minutes
Total Time 40 minutes
Difficulty Easy
Course Dinner, Italian
Cuisine Italian
Servings 4 serves
Method Stove top

Equipment

  • 1 pot to cook the pasta
  • 1 Frypan to cook the sauce

Ingredients
  

  • 300 g pasta you can use spaghetti or anything you like really
  • 1 Tbsp olive oil
  • 1 large bown onion
  • 150 ml dry white wine optional
  • 100 g Philadelphia cream cheese softened
  • 130 g frozen peas
  • 150 g Bacon or spec
  • 2 Tbsp fresh lemon juice optional
  • 1 Tbsp minced herb of your choice or mixed
  • 1 pinch Chef’s pinch of salt
  • 1/4 tsp black pepper to taste
  • 1/2 cup parmesan cheese Grana Padano is nice freshly grated

Instructions
 

  • Cook pasta in water with a big pinch of salt. Drain in a colander over a bowl, reserving some of the pasta cooking liquid for the sauce.
  • Heat oil in a medium saucepan over medium-low heat. Add chopped onion and sliced bacon; cook for 5 minutes, stirring frequently. Add wine; simmer for a few minutes until reduced to about 1/2 cup. (You can use water or stock in place of wine if you wish. Don't let the onions or cheese overly brown at this stage, or your dish won't look vibrant in colour.)
  • Add Philly, stirring with a whisk or spatula until smooth. Remove from heat; stir in peas.
  • Combine pasta and some of the reserved cooking liquid with cream sauce. Stir in juice and herb. Let stand 3 minutes for pasta to absorb sauce. Season with salt and pepper, if desired. Serve warm.
  • Change the bacon for prosciutto, speck, salami even mushrooms for a vegetarian dish. This list of alternatives is endless.
  • You can use Persian fetta instead of philadelphia cream cheese if you have it. I often use it when I have extra Persian fetta hanging around.
  • Add some chopped soft herbs? Parsley, basil etc.

Notes

You can use Persian fetta instead of philadelphia cream cheese; the taste is not the same but also very nice as an alternative. I often do this when I have extra Persian fetta hanging around rather than have it go off.
Change the bacon for prosciutto, speck, or salami; you can add or replace the meat with mushrooms for a vegetarian dish. The list of alternatives is endless.

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