A fresh twist on an Italian Classic.
1 Cup Chopped Pancetta or Bacon
1 Lb Asparagus
1 Cup Grated or Shredded Parmesan
1 Clove Garlic
1 Lb Dry Spaghetti or 1 Package of Fresh Spaghetti
1 Tbsp Olive Oil
Salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
Fresh Parsley for garnish
Optional: ½ Cup heavy cream
Put a large pot of salted water on to boil (1 tablespoon salt for every 2 quarts of water.)
Slice the asparagus into bite sized pieces at a diagonal. Steam for 2-3 minutes or just enough to cook the asparagus without it being too soft. Set aside.
Heat the olive oil in a large sauté pan over medium heat. Add the pancetta or bacon and cook slowly until crispy.
Add the garlic and cook another minute
In a small bowl, beat the eggs and mix in about half of the cheese.
Cook the pasta to al dente (still a little firm, not mushy).
Use tongs to move pasta to a bowl with the asparagus, bacon and garlic. Let it be dripping wet. Reserve some of the pasta water.
Move the pasta from the pot to the bowl quickly, as you want the pasta to be hot. It's the heat of the pasta that will heat the eggs sufficiently to create a creamy sauce.
Toss everything to combine, allowing the pasta to cool just enough so that it doesn't make the eggs curdle when you mix them in. (That's the tricky part.)
Add the beaten eggs with cheese and toss quickly to combine once more. Add salt to taste. Add some pasta water back to the pasta for a wetter sauce.
Optional step - some people like to add heavy cream at the end for a creamier sauce.
Serve at once with the rest of the parmesan cheese, a generous amount of pepper and fresh parsley.