Every time I look at some of the famous Italian women like Sophia Lauren, Isabella Rossalini or Monica Belluci, I can't help but wonder how did these people manage to be so beautifully fit and gorgeously maintained when pasta is the staple diet of every Italian household. I know I am being completely naïve and you have to exercise to remain fit, but doesn't it cross the mind of every torpid food crazy individual, "why do everything which tastes good makes us fat?"
Pasta is one such guilty pleasure. Packed with complex carbohydrates, it takes quite a bit of time for your body to break them down into simple sugars. But we just cannot keep our hands off them.. Isn't it?? So, I found a path to tackle this delight an easy way. Have pasta as a part of brunch or lunch so that you give your body enough time to utilise all those carbs to your advantage. Because carbohydrates give us energy and hence supply you the fuel you need for your whole day. Simple. No guilt. Its just refuelling. Happy me!!
The type of pasta I chose today is the noodly version, Spaghetti. Its versatility impresses me. It goes well with various sauces and can be prepared in minutes, perfect brunch material. Spaghetti carbonara requires minimal effort with next to nothing preparations beforehand. So next morning if you are feeling a bit home-sick, missing an elaborate breakfast made by your mom, this can be a good go-to Italian alternative instead of that week-old stale bread in your fridge. Food brings excitement. Give food a chance to uplift your moods. It always works (at least for me).
- Spaghetti pasta - 200 grams (enough for 2 person with a fairly large appetite)
|Durum- wheat semolina spaghetti|
- Hot water - 1 litre (for boiling the pasta)
- Garlic - 3-4 cloves (crushed roughly into small pieces)
- Olive oil / butter ( or a mixture of the two)
- Chorizo pieces (traditionally bacon is used in carbonara but you can experiment with any kind of salami as well. Vegetarians can bypass this ingredient altogether.)
- Egg- 1
- Cheese ( any hard variety goes well but remember to grade them. Amount depends on your choice of taste.)
- Black pepper powder - 2 teaspoons ( for Indian palette.)
|Chorizo pieces, egg - cheese mixture|
- Some Italian seasonings (oregano, chilli flakes, marjoram etc.)
- Take the hot water in a heavy bottomed pan along with a tablespoon of salt (don't worry, we would anyway drain the water) and boil the pasta till al dente ( I mean just done i.e. still firm when bitten). Store a cup full of that pasta stock and drain the rest.
|Boil and drain out the pasta|
- In a bowl whisk in the grated cheese along with an egg and black pepper powder.
- Take some butter and / or olive oil in a wok, allow the butter to melt and add on the garlic. Saute them for around 2-3 minutes over low flame till the garlic browns around the corners.
|The marvellous butter-garlic combination|
- Throw in the chorizo (bacon or any meat if using), give them a saute for around a minute. Wait for the fat to melt. Add in some of that stock you recovered from the pasta.
|In goes the Chorizo|
- Now put in the pasta, give it a stir and remove the wok from the flame.
- Add the whisked cheese-egg mixture and give the pasta a good stir. You do this step quickly otherwise the egg would scramble.
|About to be ready|
- Put the pasta back on the flame..Adjust the seasonings and you are good to go.
|The important seasonings|
|That creamy texture|
Look at all those creaminess!! Delizioso