I'm sorry if anyone's been having issues accessing my site over the last week or so - ever since I switched to a custom domain it's been problem after problem! Hopefully it'll be resolved soon and I can switch back to www.amuse-your-bouche.com. It's very stressful not knowing whether anyone can actually see what I'm writing! For the last 2 days I've not even been able to see it myself, so I haven't posted - but now that I've reverted back to my blogspot address, it seems to be loading okay. Please follow my Facebook page for updates, I'd hate to lose any followers over this!
Aaaanyway, after all this Internet stress (half of which I don't even really understand, although I like to pretend I do), I'm going to share a nice comfort food recipe to calm myself down. I could totally go for a big bowlful of this right now.
Obviously carbonara usually contains bacon, and obviously a vegetarian can't eat bacon (though I do love the smell, does that make me a bad vegetarian?), so I used black olives instead to add that salty, slightly smoky kick. They worked perfectly with the other traditional carbonara ingredients, plus something a bit different - leek. I love leek (I'm Welsh, I have to), and it was a really nice addition to the creamy sauce.
If you've never made a carbonara before, you might be surprised to learn that it involves breaking a raw egg into the pasta shortly before serving. Though it might sound a bit gross, it works really well if done properly (make sure you don't end up with scrambled eggs!) - the heat from the pasta is enough to make the egg safe to eat*, and it provides a rich, glossy sauce.
*I probably would err on the side of caution and avoid this if you're pregnant, though - which about 90% of food bloggers seem to be these days!
Traditional carbonara isn't hugely saucy, but I suppose you could double the sauce if you wanted more of it. I liked it like this though - the juicy olives and gooey melted cheese meant that it didn't taste at all dry.
I really want to dive headfirst into a bowl of carbonara right now and forget that computers and domains and blah blah blah ever existed.
Vegetarian pasta carbonara
Recipe adapted from Alexandra's Kitchen
1 large leek, halved lengthwise and then sliced
2 cloves garlic, minced
50g veggie parmesan-style cheese, finely grated
1 handful fresh parsley, finely chopped
100g black olives, finely chopped
Boil the pasta according to the instructions on the packet.
Meanwhile, melt the butter in a frying pan and cook the leek and garlic gently over a medium heat, stirring regularly, until the leek is very soft (around 10 minutes).
In a large bowl, beat the egg with the parmesan and milk. Add the chopped parsley and olives, and season with salt and lots of black pepper.
Once the pasta is cooked, drain it and add it to the bowl with the sauce, along with the softened leek. Stir quickly to incorporate everything without hardening the egg. Serve with more chopped parsley and parmesan cheese.