Life is full of priorities so this will be a quick post. Why? You see that egg yolk… well it’s one of those priorities i’m talking about. That egg yolk needs the heat from the pasta to evenly coat it, along with the parmesan, in order to create a luxurious finish and mouth feel. So by the time it touches the bottom of the bowl i have to be done writing so i can fully focus my attention on the swirls of my fork.
That doesn’t leave us much time for socializing, does it?
This variation on spaghetti alla carbonara gets a little help from our ducky friends. If you plan on making your own duck prosciutto i recommend following the recipe in Charcuterie by Michael Ruhlman. It’s very good and a solid introduction to curing your own meats. You can also order duck prosciutto from d’Artagnan if you’re in a pinch but that’s half the fun.
Gahhh!!.. I need to write faaaster.
You can render the fat of the duck prosciutto and cook the ramps in it to start. Or put that tub of duck fat you hide in the back of your refrigerator to good use. Fava beans make a fine accompaniments to this pasta too. Toss it all around happily if you’re in a good mood or angrily if you’re pissed…
err.. i.. i gotta go!
Spaghetti “Carbonara” with Duck Prosciutto, Fava Beans & Ramps
- serves 4
For the carbonara:
- 1 duck prosciutto (cured duck breast), thinly sliced
- rendered duck fat (or about 3 tablespoons duck fat)
- 16 ramps, cleaned
- 1 cup fava beans, cleaned and blanched
- 1 pound dry spaghetti
- 1 cup Parmigiano-Reggiano, grated
- 4 eggs, separated
- salt and black pepper, freshly ground
For the carbonara:
- Bring 6 quarts of water to a boil and add 2 tablespoons salt. Cook the spaghetti, until al dente. Drain the spaghetti, reserving some of the pasta cooking water.
- In a large sauté pan, render the duck fat. Add the ramps and saute until wilted, about 2-3 minutes. Add the slices of duck prosciutto and the fava beans and cook a little longer.
- Toss in the cooked spaghetti and heat, shaking the pan, until warmed through, add 1/2 cup to 1 cup cooking water and cook about 1 minute. Add the grated cheese, egg whites, salt and black pepper and toss until fully incorporated.
- Divide the pasta with ramps and fava beans among 4 serving bowls. Make a nest in the center for the egg yolk and drop an egg yolk into each serving, season with more freshly ground black pepper and grate additional cheese over the top. Serve immediately.