Clam Carbonara

Clam Carbonara

yields 2

  • 1/2 lb. (approx. 250g) dried spaghetti 
  • 18 littleneck clams cleaned
  • 1/2 cup half & half
  • 1 egg yolk
  • 1 whole egg
  • 1/2 cup grated Parmesan
  • 4 strips of thick-cut bacon, diced
  • 1 T white wine
  • chopped parsley, maldon salt, olive oil for garnish 

Begin by bringing a pot of water with a few T of salt up to a boil for spaghetti.  Meanwhile, combine half & half, egg yolk, whole egg, and parm; whisk together- set aside.  Add bacon to enamel-coated cast iron pan at medium, add white wine.  Continue cooking until fat has rendered; remove bacon with slotted spoon; set aside.  At this point, water for spaghetti should be boiling; add spaghetti and cook according to directions and desired doneness.  While spaghetti is boiling; add clams to a sauce pot with a few T of water on high heat.  Cover; continue cooking until clams have opened.  When spaghetti is done; remove and add to enameled cast iron pan with the remaining bacon fat; turn this pan to low heat.  Slowly stream in reserved egg mixture, stirring pasta while doing so; careful not to let the pasta overheat to prevent curdling.  Once all the mixture is in, add reserved bacon and ladle in some clam juice- enough to loosen the sauce.  Season as needed.  

Plating:

Place pasta on large dinner plate.  Arrange clams on top of pasta.  Top with parsley, a sprinkle of maldon salt, and a turn of good olive oil.  Serve with bread. 

Pairing:

beer: kölsch or Belgian dubbel