Add the crispy guanciale, stir one last time and serve your original spaghetti carbonara immediately.
Our advice: no chives, parsley or basil should be added to the carbonara pasta. The real recipe does not include the use of aromatic herbs.
History and origins
Carbonara is a typical recipe of the Lazio region, more precisely from the city of Rome. The history of this ancient dish is still uncertain, but the most accredited hypothesis is that it appeared on Italian tables around 1944, when American soldiers were looking for familiar ingredients to feed themselves (eggs, bacon, spaghetti). The first version was not like the carbonara we know today, but some cooks, seeing the concoction prepared by the soldiers, created the recipe that has successfully survived until today.
Types of pasta to use for carbonara
The Roman tradition provides for the use of spaghetti or rigatoni pasta for carbonara. The more creative versions and the natural evolution of this dish have also led to the use of penne rigate and potato gnocchi. The use of fresh egg pasta, such as tagliolini and tagliatelle, is certainly more American, and the result is still passable. Stuffed pasta is also excellent, such as ravioli, stuffed with egg yolk and pecorino cheese and then seasoned with guanciale and its fat, pecorino cheese and pepper (the classic gricia sauce, another typical Roman dish).
The alternatives to the classic carbonara are innumerable. There are those who prepare a vegetarian version, eliminating the guanciale and replacing it with asparagus, peas or zucchini. Even the guanciale, a typical dried meat from the Lazio area of Amatrice, is often replaced with pancetta. Although considered almost a heresy by purists of the Italian culinary tradition, the result is just as tasty.
There are also versions of carbonara without eggs, just create a cream with spreadable cheese and saffron (or turmeric). Pecorino is a pungent cheese, some mix it or even replace it with Parmigiano Reggiano for a slightly more delicate version of the recipe.
Carbonara should be eaten immediately to enjoy all its flavours and creaminess. The only way to enjoy it at its best is to prepare it on the spot. Also, discover the amatriciana recipe.