Flavorful spaghetti carbonara

October 29, 2008 12:00:00 AM PDT
A homemade Italian dish that will leave the whole family wanting more. Executive Chef Bob Helstrom of Bar Norcini in San Francisco shares his recipe for spaghetti carbonara.

Spaghetti Carbonara
Serves 4-6

  • 2 Tbsp. extra virgin olive oil
  • 1/2 C Shallots minced
  • 4 oz Pancetta diced
  • 1 Lb Spaghetti
  • 4 ea Egg yolks
  • 1/2 C Heavy cream
  • 1 C Grated Parmesan Cheese
  • Salt and coarsely ground black pepper

In a large pot of salted boiling water, cook the spaghetti for 8-10 minutes or until al dente.

In a small sauté pan over medium heat cook the pancetta until it is lightly browned. Add the shallots and cook for a couple of minutes or until the shallots are soft but not browned. Set aside to cool

In a large bowl beat the egg yolks, cream and parmesan together. Add the pancetta and shallots and season with salt and pepper

Drain the spaghetti and toss with the egg mixture until the pasta is well coated. Serve immediately in warm pasta bowls

Prosciutto di Parma with Comice Pears and Mountain Gorgonzola
Serves 4

  • 8 ea Prosciutto di Parma thin slices (about 8 oz)
  • 1 ea Ripe pear sliced
  • 1 ea Head of frisee cleaned
  • 4 oz Mountain Gorgonzola crumbled
  • 1 Tbs Olive oil
  • 1tsp. Sherry vinegar
  • Salt and pepper
  • Optional: 1/4 C Toasted Hazelnuts chopped coarsely

Arrange the slices of Prosciutto on 4 plates. Toss the remaining ingredients in a bowl and arrange on top of the Prosciutto.

Bresaola with Shrimp and Citrus Salad
Serves 4

  • 20 ea Bresaola thin slices (about 8 oz)
  • 8 ea 16-20 count Shrimp cooked
  • 1 ea Navel orange segmented and juiced
  • 1 ea Red Jalapeno julienned
  • 6 ea Fresh basil leaves julienned
  • 1/2 C Frisee washed and trimmed
  • 1 Tbs Olive oil
  • Salt and Pepper

Arrange the slice Bresaola equally on 4 plates. Toss the remaining ingredients along with 1 tbs. of the orange juice. Arrange the salad on top of the sliced bresaola.

About Executive Chef Bob Helstrom:
Born and raised in Ft. Wayne, Indiana, Robert Helstrom was always intrigued by the high-energy atmosphere of restaurant kitchens and began working in restaurants washing dishes while he was still a teenager. Between the ages of 17 and 22, Helstrom received his on-the-job training, working a variety of positions in over thirty restaurants, country clubs and hotels, mastering each kitchen before moving on to the next.

In 1987, Helstrom moved to Northern California accepting a position as Executive Chef at Corona Bar & Grill in San Francisco. After nearly a year at Corona Bar & Grill, Helstrom was asked to fill in at Kuleto's Italian Restaurant and shortly thereafter assumed the position of Executive Chef. Helstrom took several educational trips to Italy and immediately fell in love with the country's simple, rustic approach to cooking and commitment to fresh, handmade ingredients. Back in California, Helstrom took inspiration from his travels to create fresh, simple and flavorful Italian-inspired cuisine with a seasonal Californian flair.

Helstrom contributes to local charitable organizations with his "Chef for a Day Program" which benefits the San Francisco food bank, as well as lending his culinary expertise as a teacher at the Tenderloin Community Center's "CHEFS" program, giving San Francisco's homeless an opportunity to get off the streets with valuable restaurant skills.

While not in the kitchen, Helstrom spends his time with his wife and son at their home in Fairfax, just north of San Francisco, where he loves to spend time outside gardening, hiking, fishing and grilling delicious meals for his family.

Bar Norcini
225 Powell St
San Francisco, CA 94102
(415) 397-7720


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