Italian cooking has always been a mystery to me. While some families have traditions based on rice or pasta my Irish/German family was firmly planted in all things potato. When my father did cook Italian it was American Italian like shrimp scampi or spaghetti and meatballs. Nothing too exciting and certainly never made with fresh pasta.
Certainly Carbonara isn’t the most traditional Italian recipe with there only be records of it since the mid 20th century although the first time I had it freshly made was when an Italian roommate at my school in the Netherlands made it for us. I remember how freaked out I was at her pouring raw eggs over pasta and worrying we would all get salmonella. Thankfully I put aside my fear to eat her lovely concoction that wasn’t made with any daily and just the smallest bit of butter.
Over the years I’ve gotten to eat many wonderful carbonaras, some with spaghetti, others with fettuccine, some vegetarian, others full of pork fat yet I never got around to making it. I think my hatred of dry pasta and my totally laziness and unwillingness to make my own pasta prevented me from making Italian pasta dishes. That was until I found a couple of shops in town that make their own fresh pasta. While I am sure it’s not as good as some people’s grandmothers one of my pasta favorites is the fettuccine from . It’s the kind of pasta you can eat with just some garlic and butter and it’s so satisfying.
The inspiration for making fettecine a la carbonara was when I saw some amazing wild lobster mushrooms at my local food co-op.
Also nabbed during my grocery shopping was local duck eggs. There are few fowl that I love more than duck so there was no way I could pass up fresh duck eggs.
Having purchased this bounty of delights I set about trying to find something to do with them when I came upon this recipe . When I remember that I bought some langostino tails (other wise known in the US as squat lobster even though they are not actually lobsters at all) at Trader Joe’s I could help but have a dish with two ingredients that are called the same thing.
I followed the directions in the recipe pretty much as they were listed other than when the peas were added I also added the already cooked langostino tails and of course instead of chicken eggs I used duck eggs. I also used another tablespoon of butter and it only took 4 minutes to saute the mushrooms. The biggest challenge was adding the beaten eggs to the pasta with out it becoming scrambled and making sure all the pasta was coated in it.
All in all it was a surprisingly easy recipe to make and I loved how colourful and appealing it was.