A Smoked Salmon pasta Carbonara is super easy and quick. You don't need to use cream, just eggs and parmesan cheese. The cheese and eggs keep it nice and light and make the dish creamy enough. Plus, you are much more likely to have these ingredients in which makes it way more convenient. Smoked Salmon is a great alternative to bacon and has it's own strong flavour which is why this dish works so well.
How to make a Carbonara
If you've not made a carbonara before, it's very straightforward. Cook the pasta and then drain it. Fry the butter with a garlic clove in a seprate pan. Add the spaghetti and stir so it is well coated inthe butter. Add the salmon then mix together the eggs with the grated parmesan. Remove from the heat and quickly stir in the egg and cheese mixture. The pan will be already hot and this heat is enough to cook the eggs, but not scramble them, which is just what you want. It really is that simple. The smoked salmon doesn't need cooking so all you are doing is warming it through. I like to top this off with some freshly chopped parsley and some more parmesan cheese.
Carbonara with Smoked Salmon is a quick and healthy meat free alternative to a Traditional Carbonara that is made using bacon or left over gammon. In both these recipes, I just use eggs and parmesan cheese for the sauce rather than cream as I find the eggs and cheese are creamy enough.
When buying Smoked Salmon, look out for the Marine Stewardship Council Logo. This will let you know the salmon has been sustainably sourced from fish stocks that are not endangered. It also means the salmon has been fished without damage to other marine life. For more information on sustainably sourced salmon, have a look at the Marine Stewardship Council website.
Leftover Smoked Salmon Carbonara can be kept in the fridge for 2 - 3 days. You can eat it cold and it makes a great lunch the next day. It can be re-heated but it is advised to only reheat dishes once. Make sure it is piping hot. Because a carbonara already has the egg and cheese mixed in, it's best only re-heated in a microwave
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Smoked Salmon Carbonara No Cream
- 3 eggs organic or freerange
- 1 dash black pepper organic, fairtrade, freshly ground
- 100 g Parmesan cheese organic, grated
- 350 g spaghetti organic, fairtrade
- 50 g butter organic, preferably unsalted
- 2 cloves garlic organic, peeled and left whole
- 200 g smoked salmon cut into strips
- Put a large pan of lightly salted water on to boil. Beat the eggs together in a bowl, season with freshly ground black pepper and stir in most of the cheese.
- Put the spaghetti into the pan and cook as per the packet instructions.
- Melt the butter in a large frying pan. Using the back of a knife, press down on the garlic bulbs. This helps the flavour to be released. Add to the frying pan and fry for 2 minutes. Remove the garlic cloves with a slotted spoon and discard. The garlic flavour will be left.
- Keep the heat on low and when the spaghetti is cooked, scoop out a small cup of pasta water and put to one side then drain the rest and empty the spaghetti into the frying pan. Add the salmon strips and toss it all together and make sure the pasta is well coated in the butter.
- The crucial moment. You need a couple of minutes undisturbed. Take the frying pan off the heat and quickly pour in the eggs and cheese. Toss it furiously together and once it begins to thicken, add a splash of the pasta water to loosen it, add more water until you get the desired consistency.
- Toss it again and serve immediately with the remainder of the cheese sprinkled on top and some more freshly ground black pepper and freshly chopped chives or parsley.