Traditionally made with pancetta, this vegetarian equivalent is just as satisfying. Plus, it can be made in the time it takes to boil the spaghetti.
I’d suggest using a variety of mushrooms for this recipe. Whilst it isn’t essential, I think it helps add a depth of flavour that keeps you going back for more.
1) Get a large pan of salted water on the boil for the pasta.
2) While you wait for the water to boil, thinly slice the mushrooms and garlic.
3) Add ¼ of the butter to a large frying pan over medium-high heat. Add ⅓ of the mushrooms and fry them for a couple of minutes or until they’re golden, before flipping them over to crisp up the other side.
4) Once the mushrooms are brown and golden, remove them from the pan into a small bowl and set aside. Heat another ¼ of the butter and repeat with another ⅓ of the mushrooms. Fry, then set them aside, then repeat with the final batch of mushrooms.
5) Cooking them in batches like this helps ensure that you get lovely caramelisation on all of the mushrooms. This is important because this is what gives the dish its flavour.
6) Your water should now be boiling. Add the spaghetti and cook for 8-10 minutes until al dente.
7) Once all the mushrooms are browned, add the remaining butter and the garlic to the frying pan. Allow the garlic to sizzle for a minute then re-add all of the mushrooms to the pan. Season with about ¼ tsp salt.
8) Meanwhile, beat 3 eggs with a hearty grind of black pepper and 70g finely grated parmesan.
9) Once the pasta is cooked, drain it, reserving a ladleful of the pasta cooking water.
10) Add the drained spaghetti to the pan of mushrooms. Turn everything off the heat as you toss the pasta through the buttery mushrooms until every strand is coated.
11) Pour in the beaten eggs and cheese, along with a splash of the pasta water and continue to stir until the eggs are transformed from a goopy mixture to a glossy, creamy-looking sauce. Add a little bit more pasta water if needed to loosen the dish.
12) Spoon into warm pasta bowls and dust with plenty of fresh black pepper and parmesan.
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