Leek Carbonara with Garlic Crumb Topping

Leek Carbonara | The Mother Cooker

Leek is our next seasonal vegetable and I had an overwhelming amount of people that said they enjoyed them in pasta. So here we are with a leek carbonara. Super simple to make and topped with a delicious garlicky crumb. Pasta is such a comfort food to me and carbonara is one of my favourite versions. It’s just so quick to make and tastes super delicious, maybe it’s my love of sharp cheese that does it. This carbonara is topped with a garlic, chilli and prosciutto breadcrumb, giving another depth of texture and a salty, spicy kick.

Leeks are nutrient dense, meaning they are low in calories but high in vitamins and minerals. Grow a variety so you can pick them as baby leeks or allow them to grow to full size. They like a rich, light soil and you plant the seeds in mid to late spring. Dig in a lot of well rotted compost before planting. Choosing your place to plant them will determine on the fact that they like to be simply left in the ground. If you are doing crop rotation, leeks are best to follow peas, lettuce or cabbage. As this will make a minimal dent on the soil compaction and leeks prefer to be in a firm soil. Leek is a very versatile vegetable and are a member of the onion family. They have a milder flavour than onions and are great base for soups or stews. Find more pasta recipes here.

Leek Carbonara with Garlic Crumb Topping

Serves: 2
Prep time: 12 mins
Cook time: 15 mins
Total time: 27 mins

  • 50g leek, finely chopped in to lengths
  • 25g Parmesan cheese
  • 3 egg yolks
  • 1 piece of bread, blitzed in to breadcrumbs
  • 2 garlic cloves
  • 2 slices prosciutto
  • Drizzle of olive oil
  • 1tsp chilli flakes
  • 200g linguine/spaghetti pasta
  1. Pre-heat oven to 180c/gas mark 6 and pop on a pan of water to boil.
  2. Remove outer leaves of leek and wash removing any grit. Cut in half and then vertically cut each half in to fine strips, set aside.
  3. For garlic crumb topping, add bread, garlic, chilli flakes and prosciutto in to a blender and blitz until a fine crumb. Pop on to a lined baking tray, drizzle and toss in a little olive oil. Bake for 8 minutes on 180c/gas mark 6.
  4. Once water is boiling, add pasta and cook until al dente, around 12-15 mins. Add leeks with 5 mins left of cooking. Drain, keeping 3 tablespoons of hot pasta water.
  5. Before pasta has finished, add egg yolks in grated Parmesan in to a bowl.
  6. Quickly whisk reserved hot pasta water in to egg yolks and grated Parmesan, returning sauce to pasta immediately and tossing to combine.
  7. Serve with grated Parmesan and lots of garlic crumb topping. If you have leftover topping, it’s great for topping soups 😉