Give authentic creamy Italian carbonara a summery twist with delicious asparagus and thyme. This comforting pasta dish is super quick and simple to make, but will always hit the spot.
- Put half the butter and the pancetta in a frying pan. Cook over a medium heat for 5 minutes, stirring frequently until golden. Reduce the heat to low and add 1 crushed garlic clove. Cook for 1 minute, until softened but not coloured. Remove from the heat and transfer to a plate. Set aside.
- Return the unwashed pan to a low-medium heat and add the remaining garlic, butter and olive oil. Add the breadcrumbs and thyme and cook for about 3 minutes, stirring frequently until crisp and golden.
- In a small bowl, whisk the egg yolks, egg and two-thirds of the grated cheese. Season with freshly cracked black pepper.
- Meanwhile, cook the pasta in a large pan of boiling, salted water following the packet instructions. Add the asparagus for the last 4 minutes of cooking. Drain the pasta and asparagus – reserving half a mugful of cooking water – and return to the pan.
- Add the pancetta and egg mixture to the pan, tossing to combine. Add 4 tbsp of the reserved cooking water and stir for 1 minute, creating a creamy sauce that coats the pasta. Spoon the pasta into bowls and scatter over the toasted breadcrumbs and a couple of thyme sprigs. Serve the remaining cheese on the side.
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