Not really proper carbonara but my attempt to shoestring what is really a fairly expensive and calorific dish.
Ingredients to make enough for one: Total 45p
50g spaghetti ( I used Savers spaghetti which is perfectly acceptable stuff) - 2p
about 5g butter
50g cooking bacon, chopped (I got a pack from Morrisons and divided it into single portion pots of around 50g) - 5p
a few mushrooms, chopped (10p)
a sprinkle of garlic granules (apf)
a splash of milk - apf
1/2 a medium egg (I know, I know - I intend to make some pancakes with the rest, OK?) - 7p
18g Italian hard cheese (Sainsburies cheapo Italian hard cheese), grated - 21p
I also used a pinch of parsley (apf)
Cook the spaghetti.
While it is cooking, melt the butter in a pan and cook the chopped bacon and mushrooms. When done, sprinkle over a few garlic granules - you don't need much.
Whisk the milk and egg together. Add a small grinding of pepper.
Drain the pasta (reserve some of the water) and pop it into the pan with the bacon and mushroom. Turn the heat to low. Add the milk/egg mixture and stir well while it cooks and thickens - if it seems too thick, add a bit of the cooking water
Remove from the heat, add the grated cheese and stir again. Taste and season. I didn't add salt as I had cooked the pasta with salted water and the cheese is salty enough.
Tip into a warmed bowl and eat immediately.
And my opinion? I found it absolutely delicious, far more expensive tasting that it really is. Next time I will use a little less cheese; there was almost too much cheese flavour. 12 to 15 g will be quite enough and will reduce the cost a bit. To make up for that, next time I will add cooked veg. Some peppers, peas, maybe corn too. Just a small amount of each.
And yes, there will be a next time - sooner rather than later. I have to, if only to take a photo because, in my eagerness to taste, I forgot! Sorry!
As for those pancakes I intend to make - I want to use Jamie Oliver's recipe - one egg, one cup of milk and one cup of SR flour, but half quantities. That will be breakfast tomorrow!