A few months ago, Marc decided to give up dairy. He had been debating the idea for a while, but around October, he decided to really commit. Of course, my mind started working in overdrive. What were we going to eat? How could we possibly give up cheese, especially when we’re living in the land of cheese. I mean between France and Wisconsin we are pretty much always living in a land of cheese. But, it was a health conscious decision, and I wanted to be on board.
I immediately started quizzing all of my friends with experience living dairy free, and I felt like my head was going to implode. Alt-milks, soy cheese, nutritional yeast. I just couldn’t handle it. So I went on a quest to find naturally dairy free recipes – ones that didn’t need any fixing. The hardest ones to find were without a doubt pasta recipes.
Suddenly, I stumbled onto the idea of traditional pasta carbonara. It wasn’t anything I had ever tried before. Here in France, carbonara is literally a sickening dose of heavy cream and cheese. But, this idea of a perfectly creamy pasta dish without cream. I was so in.
Just for fun, I added some leeks and lemon, and the result was unbelievable. It was so good. I didn’t even miss my usual heap of pecorino on top. This is coming from someone who used to refuse pasta without it – I know, I’m so dramatic when it comes to cheese.
Anyway, this recipe has become an instant classic in our house. It’s something that we’ve made many times in the past couple months, and Marc even let me make it for his pregame meal yesterday.
P.S. I’ve added a new dairy free recipe category if you’re interested!Print
- Prep Time: 10 minutes
- Cook Time: 15 minutes
- Total Time: 25 minutes
- Yield: 4
- 1 16-ounce package pasta
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1 cup lardons, chopped pancetta or bacon pieces
- 1 leek, halved and thinly sliced
- 1 garlic clove, minced
- Salt & pepper
- 4 eggs
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 1 tablespoon lemon juice
- Zest of 1 lemon (about 1 teaspoon)
- Cook pasta in salted water according to package directions for al dente. Before straining, reserve 1/3 cup of the cooking water for the sauce.
- In a large skillet or frying pan, heat olive oil to medium-high heat. Sauté lardons pieces, stirring occasionally, until slightly crispy, about 5 minutes.
- Add leeks and garlic and season to taste with salt & pepper. Continue cooking, stirring occasionally for about 5 more minutes.
- In a medium bowl, whisk together the eggs, salt, lemon juice and zest.
- Temper the eggs with the reserved pasta water.
- Toss cooked pasta with leeks, lardons and egg mixture, stirring to coat evenly.
- Calories: 0
- Sugar: 0 g
- Sodium: 0 mg
- Fat: 0 g
- Saturated Fat: 0 g
- Unsaturated Fat: 0 g
- Trans Fat: 0 g
- Carbohydrates: 0 g
- Fiber: 0 g
- Protein: 0 g
- Cholesterol: 0 mg