I saw this recipe in the March issue of Rachael Ray‘s magazine and thought it was an interesting take on the traditional carbonara recipe. Instead of using bacon or pancetta, it calls for using pastrami. I made it for Paula and I. The original recipe also called for using medium shells but I used farfalle instead. It turned out to be quite tasty. Since we had some cilantro in the refrigerator, I chopped up a little bit of that instead of the parsley that was in the original set of ingredients.

Ingredients: (for two people)

  • 8-10 ounces of pasta (Note: You can use any shaped pasta such as medium shells, rotini or farfalle. You just want something to grab the sauce…)
  • 1-2 tablespoons of olive oil
  • 8 ounces of thinly sliced deli pastrami, chopped
  • 1 eggs plus 2 egg yolks
  • 2 tablespoons of finely chopped parsley (Note: I used cilantro and it worked fine)
  • 2 cloves finely chopped or grated garlic
  • 1/3 cup of finely grated Parmesan

Cook the pasta in boiling salted water until al dente and then drain while reserving 1/2 cup of the pasta cooking water.

While the water is coming to a boil or when the pasta is cooking, heat the olive oil in a skillet over medium-high heat. Add the pastrami and cook, stirring often, until browned, about 2-3 minutes. Scrape the pastrami into a large bowl and allow it to cool.

Whisk in the eggs, yolks, 2 tablespoons of the parsley, and the garlic. Whisk in the Parmesan. Gradually whisk in the hot pasta cooking water. Toss the pasta with sauce and season. with salt and pepper.

Garnish with the remaining parsley and a little more Parmesan.