Lightened-up Pasta alla Carbonara
I love carbonara. But sometimes I find the egg sauce a bit, well, slimy. To fix that I often dilute the eggs with cream. While this tastes pretty darned good, it happens to have a pretty darned bad effect on my hips. So lately I’ve been using yogurt instead. You can use any kind of plain yogurt in this recipe (from non-fat to whole milk). I’m still partial to the whole milk version, but again, I swap it out for lower fat when my mind is on my hips. I also swap out the traditional bacon or pancetta for the much lighter Canadian version.
- 12 oz whole wheat linguine ((ettuccine or spaghetti)
- 1 t olive oil
- 6 oz Canadian bacon (chopped)
- 1/2 oz Parmesan cheese (about 1/2 cup, unpacked and finely grated - plus more to serve at table)
- 1/2 t salt
- 1/2 t coarse black pepper
- 2 large eggs
- 1/2 c Stonyfield Organic Plain Lowfat Yogurt
Cook the pasta according to package directions. However, just before you drain it scoop out at least 1 cup of the hot pasta water. Note: for the pasta to cook the eggs in the sauce it needs to be Hot! Hot! Hot! when you mix them together. So do not cook it ahead of time.
While the pasta is cooking, fill a kettle with water and bring it to a boil. Empty the boiling water from the kettle into a large bowl.
Also while the pasta is cooking, warm the olive oil over medium heat. Add the Canadian bacon and cook just until it starts to brown. Remove it from the heat and set it aside.
A couple of minutes before your pasta has reached the desired doneness pour the hot water from your large bowl down the sink. To that large warm bowl, add the yogurt, parmesan cheese, salt and black pepper. Stir it around and then crack in your eggs. Whisk it all together with a fork. Add the Canadian bacon.
Don't forget to set aside some of that pasta water out of your pasta pot and then drain the pasta. Add the hot noodles to your egg mixture and stir to combine. You want all the noodles to just get coated a bit with the sauce. If the sauce seems too thick, drizzle in some of your reserved pasta water, a couple of tablespoons at a time until you get the right consistency.
Serve the carbonara at the table alongside a bowl of grated parmesan cheese and a peppermill.