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QUICK FIX

Bacon, Eggs and Linguine

March 04, 1998|MAYI BRADY | SPECIAL TO THE TIMES

Breakfast for dinner? It's not just Cliff in those IHOP commercials who thinks it's a good thing. As home cooks have known for ages, there's something comforting about eating eggs in the evening.

But you don't always have to have the basic plate of scrambled eggs and sausage. This pasta, for instance, has all of the necessary ingredients to qualify as breakfast--eggs, cream and pancetta. Regular old bacon strips would work as well if you'd rather.

You can even have your morning grapefruit at night in a salad teamed with spinach and red onion.

Menu (30 MINUTES OR LESS)

Pasta Carbonara

Grapefruit and Spinach Salad

PASTA CARBONARA

1/4 pound thinly sliced pancetta

4 egg yolks

1 tablespoon vinegar

2 tablespoons water

1/2 cup whipping cream or half and half

Salt, pepper

1 pound linguine

1/2 cup freshly grated Pecorino Romano

Chop pancetta into 1-inch pieces. Fry over medium-low heat until just barely crisp, about 5 minutes. Drain on paper towels.

For safer eggs, beat egg yolks until smooth in 2-cup glass measuring cup or glass bowl. Add vinegar and beat again. Add water and beat again. Cover measuring cup with plastic wrap and microwave on HIGH (100% power) until yolks begin to move, about 30 seconds. When yolks begin to move, cook 8 to 10 seconds longer. Remove from microwave.

Beat eggs with whipping cream and salt and pepper to taste in large serving bowl until combined. Set aside.

Cook linguine in large pot of boiling salted water until al dente, 8 to 10 minutes. Drain pasta and immediately toss with egg mixture. Top with pancetta and grated Pecorino Romano.

4 servings. Each serving:

689 calories; 781 mg sodium; 277 mg cholesterol; 23 grams fat; 87 grams carbohydrates; 32 grams protein; 0.36 gram fiber.

GRAPEFRUIT AND SPINACH SALAD

DRESSING

1/4 cup grapefruit juice

2 tablespoons red wine vinegar

1 clove garlic, pressed

Salt, pepper

3 tablespoons olive oil

SALAD

1 large pink or red grapefruit

1 (6-ounce) bag baby spinach

1/2 cup thinly sliced red onion

DRESSING

Combine grapefruit juice, vinegar, garlic and salt and pepper to taste in small bowl. Whisk in olive oil. Set aside.

SALAD

Peel and section grapefruit. Combine grapefruit, onion and spinach and toss gently with Dressing.

4 servings. Each serving:

137 calories; 109 mg sodium; 0 cholesterol; 10 grams fat; 11 grams carbohydrates; 2 grams protein; 0.63 gram fiber.

INGREDIENTS

PANTRY

Eggs

Whipping cream or half and half

Garlic

Olive oil

Red onion

Pepper

Red wine vinegar

Salt

SHOPPING LIST

1/4 pound thinly sliced pancetta

1 pound linguine

1/4 pound Pecorino Romano

2 grapefruits

1 (6-ounce) bag baby spinach

COUNTDOWN

30 minutes before: Put water on to boil for linguine.

25 minutes before: Squeeze grapefruit juice and make salad dressing.

20 minutes before: Cook pancetta.

15 minutes before: Peel and section grapefruit. Slice red onion.

10 minutes before: Add pasta to water. Beat eggs and whipping cream. Grate cheese for pasta.

5 minutes before: Toss salad.

Just before serving: Add cooked pasta to eggs and top with pancetta and cheese.

* Teeter Totter napkin and place mat from Silver Skillet, Del Mar.

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