Braisen! Pressure Cooked Artichoke, Pancetta and Egg Sauce
The luxurious and silky Carbonara sauce, dotted with smoky pancetta, helps the artichoke’s naturally nutty and sweet flavor bloom.
Carbonara is a fairly new traditional dish in Italy – introduced during WWII when American soldiers brought cured and smoked bacon into Italy on their navy ships. How this meat, intended for sailors, actually made it into an Italian kitchen is left to our imagination. Today, “traditional” carbonara is made with smoked pancetta (which is what I used) which is more widely available in Italy than bacon.In central Italy, and particularly around Rome, artichokes are almost always in season. The only exception is the sweltering summer when the plants faint from the heat and go dormant waiting for the next puff of crisp Autumn wind. This explains why so many dishes in this region include artichokes. Romans fry, sautee’, bake, stuff, gratin, grill, marinate, stew and boil them. Either alone or in harmony and contrast to other ingredients – as in this recipe.
Use the freshest best quality eggs you can get your hands on. They will be a key ingredient to this dish and you want them to taste great. Do not be alarmed if this recipe does not call for cooking the eggs, the heat of the freshly-strained pasta will take care of that – so read the whole recipe before starting and move quickly when it’s time to dress the pasta.
No salt is called-for in this recipe. The pancetta, Pecorino Romano cheese and pasta cooking water will have plenty of their own . However, if you substitute the cheese with something that is not salty, like Grana or Parmigiano, be sure to taste and adjust for seasoning before serving.
|Pressure Cooker||Accessories||Pr. Cook Time||Pr. Level||Open|
|Pressure Pan or larger||none||5 – 7 min.||High (2)||Normal|
- 3.5 oz (100g) Pancetta (or Bacon), diced
- 1 Garlic Clove, smashed
- 6 Artichokes, cleaned and sliced
- ½ cup white wine
- 2 sprigs Parsley, chopped
- 1 lemon
- 4 fresh top-quality eggs
- ½ cup Pecorino Romano, Grated
- Black Pepper, freshly ground
- Prepare large bowl with water and the juice of one or two lemons. Then, for each artichoke remove outer leaves, peel outer skin off stem (if any) and slice off top ⅓ of leaf tips. Then, slice the artichoke in half and scoop out choke with melon-baller, and slice the cleaned half into small wedges. Quickly toss into bowl with water and lemons to keep from oxidizing.
- In the cold pressure cooker add the pancetta, and turn the heat to low. When the fat has rendered and it begins to sizzle, about 5 minutes, add the garlic clove.
- When the pancetta is golden, lift the pancetta out of the pressure cooker and set aside. Then, turn the heat up to medium-high and add the strained artichoke wedges.
- Coat the artichokes with the fat from the pancetta and then stop stirring to let the artichoke wedges become slightly golden (about 5 more minutes).
- When everything has a nice color, de-glaze the pan with the wine. Carefully use your spatula to lift all of the delicious brown bits stuck on the bottom of the pan and incorporate them into the sauce.
- Close and lock the pressure cooker. Turn the heat up high and when the pan reaches pressure, lower the heat and count 5 to 7 minutes cooking time at HIGH pressure.
- When time is up, release pressure using the Normal pressure release - push, twist or lift the button or valve to release pressure.
- In the meantime, in a separate bowl, mix the eggs with pepper and pecorino cheese. When the pasta is near the end of it's cooking time, take a ladle of the pasta water and slowly pour it into the bowl with the eggs while constantly stirring - tempering the eggs.
- Strain the pasta and put back in it's pan and then immediately slowly pour down the egg mixture while stirring the pasta. Lastly, stir in the pancetta, artichokes and parsley.
- Serve immediately!!