Leek Carbonara with Mushrooms and Sage
This vegetarian take on the classic pasta dish is every bit as comforting as the original. An ideal start to the week.
30g unsalted butter
2 leeks, trimmed and sliced
2 garlic cloves, sliced
½ x 20g pack sage, leaves picked
200g mushrooms, halved
150g dried spaghetti
1 large egg
50g Italian hard cheese
1. Bring a large pan of salted water to the boil. In another pan, heat 15g butter over a low heat until bubbling; add the leeks, garlic and a pinch of salt. Cook gently for 15 minutes, until soft, then increase the heat a little. Shred ½ the sage leaves and add to the pan with the mushrooms. Cook for 2-3 minutes, stirring, until light golden.
2. Meanwhile, cook the spaghetti according to pack instructions, then drain, reserving a mug of cooking water. Stir the pasta through the leek mixture. Take off the heat; set aside for 2 minutes.
3. While it cools, add the remaining 15g butter to the empty pasta pan and return to a medium heat. When the butter starts foaming, add the remaining sage leaves and cook for about 1 minute, until golden and crisp; set aside. In a medium bowl, lightly beat the egg, then finely grate the cheese and stir it in. Add 2 tbsp of the pasta water, then pour over the spaghetti. Toss thoroughly until all combined in a silky sauce, adding more pasta water if needed. Season and serve topped with the crispy sage leaves.