Fish On Friday…Smoked Salmon Carbonara


You know when they have a fishing show on TV? They catch the fish and then let it go. They don’t want to eat the fish, they just want to make it late for something.
Mitch Hedberg

I found a small chunk of smoked salmon stashed in the freezer and thawed it out early in the day, later on and in about 30 minutes, dinner was ready!  Prep ahead, fix a salad and enjoy a different take on “carbonara”.

 It doesn’t take very much salmon for the recipe 4 ounces is a good amount, but that is for about a pound of pasta and the dish is so rich in the end, resist adding more. The salmon looks like small pieces, but each bite is full of smoky salmon flavor.  So many flavors of smoked salmon to pick from these days, but I don’t get more exotic than the peppered version for this dish.

About the linguine, I cooked 1/2 a pound, still too much for two as most recipes suggest easily feeds three or nice for lunch the next day…



1 egg
1/4 inch thick chunk of pancetta, sliced thinly,
a few grates of nutmeg,
pinches of red pepper flakes
ground pepper to taste (omit if using peppered salmon),
1/8 cup cream
1/8 cup milk
1/4 cup white wine
2 teaspoons olive oil
2 cloves minced garlic
1 cup finely grated Parmigiano Reggiano

2-3 ounces smoked salmon torn into small pieces

1 whole happy chicken egg whisked into a bowl, add 1/8 th of a cup heavy whipping cream and 1/8  of a cup milk cup and whisk.  Grate in a little nutmeg and some freshly ground pepper. Use a microplane to grate about a cup of Parmigiano Reggiano, reserve 1/4 cup and then gently blend the rest of the cheese into the egg and milk.  If making ahead of time, cover and refrigerate.

Heat the olive oil in a sauté pan (medium high is high enough on my range) and add the pancetta strips fry until is a little crispy stir in garlic and cook for about 30 seconds add white wine and simmer for 2-3 minutes to reduce, add pinches of red pepper flakes.   This part of the sauce can also be made ahead of time and reheated before finishing the dish.

Remove egg, milk, cheese blend from the fridge at least 20 minutes before tossing the pasta together. Reheat the goodies in the sauté pan and keep warm.

I take a bowl large enough to hold all of the pasta and ingredients and warm it under a range heat lamp, but it can also be warmed over the pasta water.  Cook your pasta according to package directions, reserve one cup of the pasta water.  Add the pasta to the sauté pan and toss until coated Add some of the milk and egg to the warm bowl and slowly add the remainder, toss in some of the salmon and then add the pasta, tossing quickly and finally adding the remainder of the salmon.  Serve with remaining grated cheese…