Fiddlehead Pasta Carbonara
Carbonara recipes traditionally include pancetta or bacon which makes it a hard dish to make for vegetarians or people who don’t eat pork. In this version, we make the same delicious creamy egg-based sauce but we flavor it with garlic and leeks. The fiddleheads add texture and a subtle spring flavor. The tomatoes add tart juiciness.
Fiddlehead pasta carbonara
by Soumeya | May 2019
- Prep time: 10 minutes
- Cook time: 30 minutes
- Inactive time: 0 minutes
- Total time: 40 minutes
- 4 tablespoons olive oil
- 8 ounces fiddleheads
- 2 medium leeks, diced
- 2 garlic cloves, minced
- 8 ounces spaghetti
- 1 egg plus 4 yolks *
- 2 tablespoons pecorino romano, grated *
- 1 tablespoon parmigiano-reggiano, grated *
- 4 ounces cherry tomatoes *
- 1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper (ground medium-coarse), plus more for serving
- Grated cheese for serving
- Heat the olive oil in a large frying pan over medium heat, until shimmering. Add the fiddleheads, leeks and garlic. Saute until wilted and slightly golden, 10 minutes. Set aside.
- Cook pasta in salted water until it is at the desired doneness (follow manufacturer instructions). Remove from the heat but do not drain.
- In a heat-proof mixing bowl or saucepan whisk the eggs and yolks, pecorino romano and parmigiano reggiano and black pepper. Set aside.
- Using tongs, take out the pasta and add it to the fiddleheads mixture and mix, folding everything together. (see note)
- Add the pasta and fiddleheads mixture to the eggs mixture and combine. Add one ladle of the pasta water to the mixture, about 3 tablespoons. Add the tomatoes.
- Set the heat-proof mixing bowl or saucepan with the pasta over the boiling pasta water (add more if the water is too low but don’t let it touch the bowl or saucepan).
- Mix the pasta mixture quickly until it thickens to a creamy silky consistency, about 12 minutes.
- Add salt and pepper to taste.
- Serve hot, sprinkle with cheese prior to serving.
- You can add the vegetables to the pasta after making the thick carbonara sauce.