This Fettuccine Carbonara recipe has a few more ingredients than the rest and has no eggs. The different flavors of vegetables combine wonderfully with pieces of crispy bacon and heavy cream and create a creamy delicious pasta that is also nutritious. Slices of onions and mushrooms are sautéed in butter only until tender and fragrant, then they are added to green peas and oven baked bacon. You will also love the vegetarian version of this pasta, simply leave out the bacon and add some extra mushrooms instead.
I have used two kinds of similar cheeses with slightly contrasting flavors: Freshly grated Parmesan and Romano cheeses. Both are hard cheeses that have been aged for several months. Parmesan is light yellow in color with a somewhat nutty and mild flavor, but Romano on the other hand is a creamy white cheese with a sharper flavor. Both of these cheeses work very well with pasta dishes, and they are even better when combined. I really do recommend using the freshly grated cheese rather than the packaged ones. The freshly grated cheese has more moisture, and melts nicely into a smooth creamy sauce with a fantastic flavor.
I bake the bacon in the oven for this recipe. I can’t even remember the last time that I fried bacon over the stove top in a pan. This method is so much easier with a lot less mess. All you need is a shallow sheet pan lined with wide heavy duty aluminum foil, cut to extend about 3 inches on all sides, and a rack that fits inside the sheet pan.
There you have it, beautiful crispy bacon, no mess, and no fat sticking to the cooked bacon. Let it cool and then chop and set aside.
Add the sauteed onions and mushrooms, the bacon, and green peas to a large 12-inch nonstick skillet and set aside.
Cook the fettuccine until al dente. Keep warm.
Warm the skillet over medium heat until the ingredients are heated through, then add the cream and bring it to a low boil
Add the grated cheeses, butter and freshly cracked black pepper
Cook a little until cream thickens, then add the cooked fettuccine and toss to coat. Serve with a salad and a slice of garlic bread.
Cook Time: 10-15 minutes
- 8 ounces fettuccine noodles
- 1 large yellow onion diced large (about 2 ½ cups)
- 2 TBSP butter
- One 16-ounce package of bacon strips, baked in the oven and cut into ¾ inch pieces (leave out for the vegetarian version)
- 12 ounces button mushrooms (16 ounces for the vegetarian version)
- 2 TBSP butter
- ¼ tsp kosher salt
- ⅛ tsp freshly cracked black pepper
- 8 ounces green peas
- 1⅔ cups heavy cream
- 2 TBSP butter
- ⅓ cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese
- ⅓ cup freshly grated Romano cheese
- Freshly cracked black pepper to taste
- Extra grated Parmesan/Romano cheese for sprinkling over the cooked pasta
- Bake the bacon according to the notes, or fry if you wish. Once cool enough to handle chop into ¾ inch pieces. Set aside.
- If the green peas are frozen rinse them under warm water to thaw and drain completely. Set aside.
- Meanwhile dice the onion and sauté over medium low heat in a large 12-inch nonstick skillet in 2 TBSP butter until translucent and tender. Do not brown. Set aside.
- Cut up the mushrooms into ¾ inch thick pieces. Saute in the same skillet over medium heat with 2 TBSP butter, salt and black pepper until tender. If there is any liquid in the skillet, increase the heat to medium high for couple of minutes until it cooks off.
- Meanwhile cook the fettuccine noodles in salted water until al dente. Drain and Keep warm.
- In the same skillet mix the sautéed onions, mushrooms, chopped bacon and the green peas. Heat over medium heat for 5-6 minutes, or until all the ingredients are heated through.
- Add the heavy cream and bring to a slow boil over medium heat. Stir gently to coat all the ingredients.
- Add 2 TBSP butter, ⅓ cup Parmesan cheese and ⅓ cup Romano cheese. Sprinkle with freshly cracked black pepper to taste. Stir to combine and continue cooking until cream thickens, 1-2 minutes.
- Add the cooked fettuccine noodles and toss with the rest of the ingredients. Cook over medium heat for another 5 minutes.
- Sprinkle extra grated Parmesan/Romano cheese and freshly cracked black pepper over the pasta, if desired. Serve with a slice of garlic bread and a salad.
Preheat the oven to 450 F, center rack
Line a large baking sheet with wide heavy duty aluminum foil. Extend the foil about 3 inches on all sides of the baking sheet and lift it up to create 4 walls to prevent grease splatter inside the oven. Place a rack, large enough to hold the bacon strips, inside the baking sheet.
Arrange the bacon strips side by side on the rack and bake in preheated oven for 20-25 minutes, or until crispy and golden brown.
Allow to cool before chopping to ¾ inch wide pieces.