One of my very, very favorite comfort foods is pasta carbonara. The ingredients are easy and the preparation is easy and the results are fantastic. Even if I can’t find genuine pancetta, a rasher or two of ordinary American-style bacon does just fine.
Thing is, when you go out to a place like the Olive
Pit Garden what you get is pasta with a cream sauce with bits of onion and sometimes peas and shrimp. Wrong. Maybe that dish got good numbers out of the corporate focus group, but it’s not carbonara.
My own travels in Italy, including trying to cook for my cousins, reveals that Italy is a nation of finicky, picky eaters who love their own traditional national cuisine and not much else. And carbonara is something that people seem to get wrong all the time, to the great irritation of the Italians.
So when this video from the French online magazine Demotivateur started making the rounds…
…Italians quite correctly called it a “horror show” and “Sacrilegio!” The manufacturer of the very pasta used in the video above called for Italy’s Prime Minister to intervene. While I am one to say that if it tastes good and it’s made with wholesome ingredients, by all means eat it, I can’t say as I entirely blame the Italians for this. Raw bacon boiled in the pasta water, onions, crème fraîche, and farfalle are not the ingredients of pasta carbonara. Whatever bizarre Gallic concoction this is, even if it winds up tasting good, this is not pasta carbonara.
Neither is some vegan thing made with cashews, squash, nor spinach dreamed up out of whole cloth in the UK. Maybe that dish is good too (I’m skeptical), but it’s not a carbonara, is what I’m saying.
This is how you make carbonara:
See, it’s easy. About the only thing I’d add to the video is warm up the service plates in the oven for a few minutes first so they complete the job of cooking the egg sauce all the way through. And it’s really, really tasty. It takes ten minutes, and you probably already have all these ingredients readily at hand anyway. Ora, andate, e cucinare!
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