Spaghetti carbonara by Miss Leah Lady

Spaghetti carbonara by Miss Leah Lady

Like all home cooking much of this is done by taste and feel so if you want to add more Speck or Pecorino to this dish feel free, it really depends on your taste preference. In serving this dish it’s all about the layering to ensure you get the perfect bite with each and every mouth full! –Miss Leah Lady


Based on 4 people

1 packet of spaghetti (we use gluten free as Mrs B is gf for the time being)

1 whole egg

4 Egg Yolks

200 – 300 grams smoked speck or pancetta/prosciutto (buy in the large chunks that you can cut up)

150 grams grated pecorino (alternatively half/half with Gana Padano) & extra for serving

75g or half a reasonable bunch of chopped flat-leaf parsley

2 garlic cloves (more if you have a vampire aversion)

cracked pepper (season to taste, the meat is salty enough)

EVOO for drizzling


Timing is everything for this dish and it is not able to be made in advance. What you’re aiming for is an emulsion of eggy-cheesy sauce and the fried meat is scattered at the end.

Chop into pieces to your preference the speck or pancetta – Heat a pan up over a medium heat with a drizzle of olive oil

Peel two garlic cloves and crush them slightly with the weight of your hand and a knife to put into the heated pan

Add the piggy and cook until nice and crisp – once cooked you can either discard the garlic cloves or bash them up in amongst the speck and make the garlic part of the dish

Mix the grated cheese into a vessel with the yolks and cracked pepper. Don’t overwork the mixture, however you do want a homogenous paste-like consistency.

The mixture can be set aside as the pasta boils.

When pasta is nearing completion, reserve 1/2 cup of pasta water — this will help loosen the sauce if it’s too thick.

Drain the pasta and place directly into pasta pot again (with the heat off). It is not necessary to drain all the water because this will help with the sauce consistency.

In a similar fashion to making mayonnaise, slowly dribble the yolky-cheese mixture into the pasta pot stirring and working through the threads. Repeat, modulating between dribbles of pasta water and cheesy mixture until you have the right consistency of sauce. Be careful not to add too much pasta water at once as the sauce can become too runny and you lose the richness.

If you add it all at once you will risk scrambling the yolk.

Plate up by layering in the following fashion:

  1. Pasta

  2. Fried speck/Pancetta

  3. Grated cheese

  4. Repeat 2-3 times

  5. End with chopped parsley

Once towered up in a glistening mound of kilojoules, drizzle with extra kilojoules in the way of EVOO.

Enjoy with reckless abandon and a bottle of marsanne viognier.