1 (12 ounce) package spaghetti or linguine
8 bacon strips
2 tablespoons butter or oil (optional)
1 onion, diced
2 garlic cloves, minced
2 cups cubed fully cooked ham
3/4 cup grated parmesan cheese
3/4 cup half and half
Salt and pepper
3/4 cup sliced ripe or stuffed olives
2 tablespoons minced fresh parsley
1. Cook pasta according to package directions.
2. Meanwhile, dice strips of bacon and place in a large skillet over medium heat. Cook until just crisp. Remove to a plate lined with a paper towel.
3. Pour out most of the grease from the skillet and return it to the stove.
4. Add diced onion and minced garlic to skillet. Cook until onion pieces are tender.
5. Add ham to the skillet and continue cooking until the ham is warmed through. Reduce heat.
6. In a small bowl, beat 3 eggs. Add the parmesan cheese and half and half. Stir to combine.
7. When the pasta is done, drain it, reserving a cup or 2 of the pasta water; add pasta to skillet along with bacon.
8. Slowly drizzle in the egg mixture, stirring the pasta the entire time. The sauce will become thick and coat the pasta. Add pasta water as needed to reach desired creaminess. Season with salt and pepper to taste.
9. Just before serving, gently stir in olives and parsley.
10. Garnish with additional parmesan cheese, if desired. Serve.
Yield: 6 servings
Quick Pasta Carbonara recipe is a combination of recipes from Taste of Home’s Quick Cooking Annual Recipes Cookbook and thepioneerwoman.com with photo by Lois Linke.