Sunday, 25 February 2007

A Very Humble Offering

Oh dear, it's one of those weeks again... no idea what to cook, and not hungry anyway*. But in desperate times like these, I always have someone to turn to.. Sophia (and eggs).



Gosh, how many women continue to smoulder like that at her age? Although I've had this book for years and have thumbed through it countless times, I haven't made many of its recipes. The anecdotes inside provide for a good read, which I suppose distracted me from the cooking part. In it are snippets from different milestones of her life, photos and occasionally, the history of certain Italian favourites. One of mine is Carbonara, which varies from kitchen to kitchen.



This isn't Sophia Loren's recipe, but she pretty much taught me how to make a good one!

How to: For 4 - separate 4 eggs, cook 400g of fresh or 300g of dried pasta, chop one medium onion, crush 5 cloves of garlic and hack away at 200g or so of fatty bacon. Standby 300ml of cream, some oregano and grated parmesan.

Heat bacon in an empty casserole until the fat sizzles and the bacon starts to brown. If you're not health-conscious, add 1 tbsp each of butter and olive oil, then add the onions and cook until they brown, too. Add garlic and a few pinches of dried oregano, as well as a few tablespoons of water from cooking the pasta (if you remembered to keep it - I seldom do!). Throw in the pasta and heat through.

In a bowl, microwave about 300ml of light cream, and beat the egg yolks into it. Add salt and pepper if desired and pour onto warm pasta. Divide into 4 portions and sprinkle parmesan generously over each portion before serving.

Variations: Pancetta or coppa instead of bacon. Parsley instead of oregano. In this recipe, I also added the juice of one lemon to the cream. Not everybody adds onions. Alternatively, if you don't like your yolks to set, don't add them to the cream, but make a shallow well in each individual portion of pasta and place a yolk in it.

Body Count: 200g of bacon.

*I'd been losing myself in bags after bags of Doritos lately, even shortly before dinnertime. Now I know why my mom used to get mad at me for all that snacking! :)

10 comments:

Lydia said...

You can't argue with the fact that pasta has been good to Sophia Loren. Somehow, when I eat it, I don't end up looking like her....

Shilpa said...

Hi Lydia! Sigh, we are but mere mortals stuck with mediocre genes... ;-)

Claude-Olivier said...

comment ca te ne sais pas quoi faire à manger...bon bon, ca va car tu as choisi des pâtes, aliments au combien merveilleux et délicieux...moi j'adore en tout cas..joli photo ;-)

Amitiés
Claude

Sandeepa said...

Ha ha agree with Lydia :) :)

Interesting book you have. Not much of a pasta Fan so don't know if I would make this, but waiting for the DhanShak recipe

Shilpa said...

Hi Sandeepa, heh heh, if you really must try making it, this is where I got my dhansak recipe:

http://indianfood.about.com/od/chickendishes/r/chickendhansak.htm

I just don't know if it's supposed to be a joke or I just went horribly wrong somewhere.. ;-) Will take me some time to try it with a different recipe!

-----

Coucou Claude,

Merci merci, c'est pas évident de rendre belles les pâtes.. ;-) Je vais tâcher de faire la cuisine un peu plus chic cette semaine, mais je viens de perdre une couronne, donc tu imagines bien la panique! :( sans dire comment ça peut changer un peu son appétit!

S

tigerfish said...

I tried making carbonara before long long time ago but it failed as the sauce become rather clumpy. I prefer tomato-based sauce all the way but sometimes, something cheesy still tempts me.

jacob said...

jeez, that's beautiful. sorry, shilpa, but i never got around to going to emarald hill to do those sketches, been travelling. but just discovered that one of my friends lives there. so it's gonna be sooner rather than later.

Shilpa said...

Tiger, let me guess.. did you add your cheese to the cream? I used to do that and also got a clumpy sauce, but have learned my lesson...

Hey Jacob, no sweat about Emerald Hill, take your time! :) I'll be seeing it apne ankhon se (with my own eyes) anyway in a very short while. Will be back in S'pore for the whole month of May, and if I get a chance to meet you and your missus while there, it would be great to be able to put a face to the name! :)

jacob said...

hey absolutely, shilpa. it looks like we should be around in may. mail me as you get a fix on the dates etc, ok?

Shilpa said...

Jacob, write me! the address is flogrosbif@mail.com

I gave you the dates on your blog, but here they are again 30/4 - 26/5

Ugh, preparing to go to the dentist now, with my tooth in a tin box...