Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Pasta alla Carbonara: Part Two

Sure we could have just reheated the pasta alla carbonara and been happy, but that's just too boring. We needed to reinvent these leftovers.

One of our favorite things to do with leftover spaghetti (or fettuccine) is to make spaghetti pie. This pasta alla carbonara was the perfect dish to do just that. They often say the sequel is never quite as good as the original. In this case, I beg to differ.

Pasta alla Carbonara Pie


To the leftover carbonara, we added two more local eggs and about a half a cup of grated Parmesan cheese. We mixed it all together making sure the newly added eggs coated all the pasta. We went completely on feel and looks for how much egg and cheese to add. The key is to make sure the leftover pasta is loose and completely coated with the additional eggs. It's important to create the bond for the pie.

In a large frying pan over medium-high heat we heated a few tablespoons of extra virgin olive oil. When the oil was hot we poured in the pasta mixture and flattened it out in the pan with the back of a spatula to form about a one inch thick disk. Then we left it alone. When we were able to lift it easily with a spatula and see that the bottom was nicely browned and the edges getting crispy we flipped it.

How to flip it without making a mess? Well, to be honest our method for flipping a large spaghetti pie isn't exactly perfect but it does the job. We lay our pizza peel on top of the frying pan. We turn the stove off and with oven gloved hands grab the peel and pan together and flip with conviction. You definitely have to flip it like you mean it, any hesitation and there will be spaghetti pie all over the stove and floor. Trust us, we know. Then, we place the pan back on the stove, turn the heat back on to medium-high and add another tablespoon of extra virgin olive oil. Next, we slide the flipped pie, which is now on the peel, into the pan. With the back of the spatula we make sure the pie is sitting flat in the pan and, like we did with the first side, just let it cook until browned.


Once the edges are crispy, both sides fully browned and it's all holding together, we slide it out of the frying pan onto a cleaned pizza peel. We like to top it with some fresh chopped parsley from the garden, a touch more cheese and a few pinches of crushed red pepper flakes. We cut it into wedges and dive in.


Of all the spaghetti pies we have made together, this is hands down our favorite. I think the fact carbonara is all eggs and cheese to begin with lends itself to this leftover reinvention. It simply binds together perfectly and, of course, tastes fantastic!
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