Meet Irina of Tuscany, a vespa riding Italian chef émigré to Australia. Together, we share a bottle of wine with her French partner who has just arrived from Alice Springs (by car) and a German exchange student enrolled at Bond University. In our shared Airbnb, Irina cooks a vegetarian carbonara pasta dish. The recipe is – as I can remember it.
Zucchini (in place of bacon) was sautéed in a pan with oil and then set aside. Most likely seasoned. If it were bacon, oil wouldn’t be used.
Half of this Pecorino Romano cheese was grated into a bow.
Egg yokes were separated from whites and placed in a bowl with salt and pepper. 1 egg yoke per person, plus 1.
For the pasta – salt was added once the water boiled, not sooner. Pasta is tossed in, of course.
The bowl of egg yokes and grated cheese are combined into a creamy consistency. This is the carbonara sauce. For food safety – a teaspoon or two of hot water (from the pasta pot) is added to carbonara sauce. Care is taken to avoid actually cook the sauce by adding too much or too hot water.
When the pasta is ready and strained, all ingredients – carbonara sauce, pasta and zucchini (replacing bacon) are mixed together. Serve immediately with cheese. Eat with friends.