Pasta with a heavy red sauce doesn’t sound as appealing in the summer as in the winter, but it’s still nice to have pasta night once in a while.
It’s easy enough to drizzle pasta with a high-end olive oil, serve with a side salad and call it a night. But if you want a slightly more substantial entree, consider the carbonara.
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The Florence-born “Top Chef” favorite Fabio Viviani shares the recipe for this Italian favorite in his new book, “ Fabio’s 30-Minute Italian: Over 100 Fabulous, Quick and Easy Recipes” (St. Martin’s Press, $27.99). He crisps up guanciale, an Italian cured pork, but you could use pancetta or bacon. Drain the grease if there’s a lot of fat on the bacon; otherwise, leave a little behind to season the sauce.
Linguine with Crispy Guanciale and Creamy Poached Egg
1 pound dried linguine
1 tablespoon vinegar
2 tablespoons butter
1 cup diced guanciale or pancetta
2 garlic cloves, chopped
2 shallots, sliced thin
1 cup chicken stock
1/2 cup heavy cream
1/2 cup grated Grana Padano cheese
Salt and pepper
Bring a pot of salted water to a boil and drop in pasta. Cook the pasta about 7 to 9 minutes, while bringing a small pot of water with vinegar to a simmer for the eggs.
Meanwhile, heat the butter in a large pot on medium heat and add the guanciale. Render it until just crispy, about 7 to 8 minutes. Add the garlic and shallots and cook for another 2 minutes. Add the chicken stock, bring to a boil, and reduce by half. Season with salt and pepper.
Swirl the vinegar water with a spoon or whisk. As you’re doing this, crack each egg and carefully drop it into the swirling water so that the whites wrap around the yolks. Cook for 4 minutes. Carefully remove and place on a plate that has been wrapped tightly with plastic wrap.
Add cream to the pasta sauce and reduce by half. Once reduced, add pasta to sauce. Toss the pasta, then incorporate the cheese. The pasta should be very creamy, but not too thick. Place in bowls and serve with an egg on top of each. Serves 4.
— From “ Fabio’s 30-Minute Italian: Over 100 Fabulous, Quick and Easy Recipes” by Fabio Viviani (St. Martin’s Press, $27.99)