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Vegetarian Carbonara Pasta

The combination of a strong flavored cheese and egg is mighty delish. Smoked gouda, or a mix of sharp cheddar with Parmesan Reggiano, works quite well. But one the most memorable variations was using the alder-smoked goat cheese from Elk Creamery.

This recipe would serve two people. Boiled peas, or sautéed zucchini, nicely complements this dish.


  • 1 egg
  • 2 tablespoons milk and/or crème fraîche
  • salt for pasta water
  • 1/2 cup shallots, finely diced
  • 2 to 3 cloves of garlic, finely minced
  • freshly grounded pepper, to taste
  • 1 to 2 ounces strong flavored cheese, shredded
  • 5 to 6 ounces pasta, such as spaghetti, linguini or rotelle


  1. In the serving bowl, whisk the egg and milk. Set aside.
  2. Start the water to boil for the pasta. Add salt to the water.
  3. Sauté the shallots and garlic in a saucepan over high heat until golden brown. Add freshly ground pepper to taste. Set aside to cool.
  4. Start cooking the pasta once the water is boiling.
  5. When there’s only a minute or two remaining for the pasta, add the shallots to the egg mixture in the serving bowl. The shallots should still be warm, but not hot enough to curdle the egg. Stir in the cheese.
  6. When the pasta is al dente, drain and quickly put into the serving bowl. Toss well; the heat should melt the cheese and cook the egg. Serve immediately.

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