Chloe Cooks | Spaghetti Carbonara

Chloe Cooks | Spaghetti Carbonara

Yes today we are back with another cooking post and this being the first one which isnt muffin related, yay! So I thought I would start off with something easy being a spaghetti carbonara.

After going out for dinner in London last week at Vapiano’s  in oxford circus (check them out, they are soo good), after eating the best carbonara I think i’ve ever had I was inspired to try and cook my own. Now I can’t this quite holds up to theirs (what their chefs can do just makes my mind boggle) but if you are a lover of pasta and Italian food in general this is a great easy, cheap and tasty alternative.

Now I know with it creeping into the summer months many of us are ditching the hearty carb heavy dishes in favour of salads and lighter dishes however I think theirs room for a good pasta somewhere (how their isn’t a spec of Italian blood in my I don’t know.)

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Ingredients: (for 4 people)

  • 400g spaghetti
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 200g smoked Pancetta 
  •  cubes or streaky bacon, chopped
  • 2 garlic cloves, crushed
  • 3 eggs
  • 75ml double cream
  • 50g Grana padano or Parmesan, finely grated, plus extra to serve

 

Method 

  1. Cook the spaghetti. Bring a large, deep pan of salted water to the boil. Plunge spaghetti into the water, stir well and cook, following pack instructions.
  2. Fry the pancetta. Meanwhile, heat the oil in a frying pan. When hot, tip in the pancetta or streaky bacon. Fry over a medium heat until the fat in the meat has melted down into the pan and the meat has turned lightly golden. Be careful not to crisp the pancetta too much; it will be cooked a little bit more later on in the recipe. Remove from the heat and set aside.
  3. Prepare the sauce. Crack 2 of the eggs into a mixing bowl. Separate the yolk from the third egg: gently crack the side of the shell and, using both hands, slowly open it into two halves over a separate bowl – you want to keep the yolk in one of the halves. Tip the yolk from one shell half to the other and repeat until all the egg white has fallen into the bowl below, taking care not to crack the yolk on any rough shell edges. Tip the yolk in with the other eggs and beat together, along with the cream, the cheese and some seasoning.
  4. Combine the dish. Add garlic to the pancetta and return frying pan to hob. Fry over high heat for 1 min or until garlic is cooked and pancetta warmed through. Meanwhile, drain spaghetti. Tip back into the hot saucepan off the heat. Pour egg mixture over pasta, followed by hot pancetta, garlic, any fat and oils. Toss quickly and thoroughly with spaghetti spoon or tongs. Mix until it has thickened to a smooth, creamy sauce. Serve with extra cheese and freshly ground pepper.

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Festive Favourite 4 – Apple and Cinnamon Muffins

Festive Favourite 4 – Apple and Cinnamon Muffins

After the success of my first batch I couldn’t help but churn out another batch but this time with a little bit of a festive twist. 

When I think if christmas food and cooking the first thing that springs to mind for me is all the festive spices which go into making all the mince pies, christmas puddings and cake. 

I thought i’d stay simple and stick to muffins with a little christmas kick! (unfortunately not of the alcoholic variety)  

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Ingredients  (to make 24) 

3 mugs of self raising flour 

1 mug of brown or white sugar 

2 eggs 

1 1/2 mugs of milk 

3/4 mug of vegetable oil 

2 apples (one in the mixture one for decoration) 

paper cases and muffin tin 

Recipe 

  1. Pre heat the oven to 180 degrees fan oven/200 degrees/ Gas mark 6 
  2. Mix all the dry ingredients together, then add the ‘wet ones’. 
  3. Finely chop up the apple and add to the mixture 
  4. Spoon all the mixture into individual muffin cases and place pieces of sliced apple on the top and sprinkle with sugar 
  5. and bake them in the oven for 20/25 minuets depending on the size of you muffins.  

Simple! 

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Again instead of making the full 24 which this recipe makes I halved it to make 12 which thinking recipes never quite make what they intend to so surprisingly I actually did manage to come out with 12. 

I decided to use a normal apple instead of a cooking apple for these with wanting the chunks of apple to still remain whole instead of mush down into the cake its self.

Extra top tips for these:  

  • Fill the cases quite full of the cake mixture, they do rise but not quite as much as i thought so you don’t have to leave too much of the case for rising room
  • For the apple slices for the top, roll them in sugar before placing them on top for an extra sweet flavour.

 

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Photos taken on a Canon 1200D