Asparagus Carbonara

1:32 am on 26 September 2008

With just four spears of asparagus for each person, you can make a delicious pasta dish, enriched with a little egg, cream and parmesan. This style of dish is usually made with spaghetti, but it is just as good made with pasta shapes. For yesterday's lunch I used wagon wheels.

(Serves 2)


  • 1 egg
  • 2 tablespoons cream
  • salt and pepper
  • quarter cup freshly grated parmesan or other hard cheese
  • 100g spaghetti, or other dried pasta.
  • 8 spears asparagus
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil


First break into a bowl the egg, cream, seasonings and grated cheese. Beat lightly and set aside.

Bring to the boil a large pot of water, salt it well and boil the pasta for the time recommended on the package.

While the pasta is cooking, break off and discard the pale ends of the asparagus spears. Use a slanting cut to slice the remaining spears, leaving the tips whole.

When the pasta is almost cooked, add the asparagus to the pot.

When both are tender, drain the pasta and asparagus into a sieve, using the cooking liquid to heat a large bowl. Tip out the liquid and add the pasta and asparagus.

Toss with the oil, then pour on the egg, cream and cheese mixture. Toss together so that the heat of the pasta and asparagus lightly thickens the egg and cream.

Serve and eat immediately.

From Afternoons with Jesse Mulligan

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