Saturday, March 31, 2012

Oh, Sophia !!!

Sophia Loren, what have you done !!!!!

You were the standard for beauty back in the 50's , and many women aspired to your measurements, fashions and eyebrows. Many an eyebrow plucking was done with you in mind. Your complexion was another goal , inspiring many a purchase of Noxema and Ponds Cold Cream.That was bad enough, but your culinary contributions have been the stuff of endless controversy to this day ! A simple pasta dish should never be the subject of such debate ! You had to go to Italy to film on location, encounter a group of coal producing men who offered to make you and the film crew a dish that was sort of a regional recipe. That was good- but did you have to write down the recipe and tell people it was exact ? Didn't you know that words like authentic and exact to a chef is the same thing as waving a red flag in front of a bull ?? What were you thinking ????

Spaghetti Carbonara is the controversial thing your brought back, and endless debates as to the dish having cream or not have rolled on and on and on. Foodies will quest for an authentic article. Me , if it contains cream and eggs, I am so there ! I have no idea if it is authentic-I only know this is good !

This is how I make it, and I do not remember who's recipe this was originally

Pasta Carbonara
   1 pound bacon, diced into 1-inch cubes
   salt and pepper
    6 eggs, at room temperature
    1/2 cup heavy cream, at room temperature
    1 1/4 cup freshly grated Parmesan
    1 pound dried penne
    4 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley leaves

Heat a large saute pan, until hot. Add bacon and saute until golden brown and crispy, about 5 minutes.
 Season with black pepper and remove pan from heat.In a medium bowl, beat the eggs and cream. Season with salt and pepper. Stir in Parmesan, reserving 2 tablespoons for garnish.In a large pot, boil 6 quarts of salted boiling water. Add pasta and cook until al dente, about 8 to 10 minutes. Drain pasta in a colander.
Do not rinse with water; you want to retain the pasta's natural starches so that the sauce will stick. While the pasta is still hot, return it back to the pot. Add the browned bacon and mix well. Add the cream mixture and coat the pasta completely. It's important to work quickly while the pasta is still warm so that the cream mixture will cook, but not curdle. Add remaining Parmesan and chopped parsley.

Serve. Dig in, think of Sophia and ask yourself if this dish would be any better using an authentic recipe or not.

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