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Seafood carbonara is a tasty and creamy variant of carbonara pasta, typical of Roman cuisine, seasoned with eggs, guanciale and Pecorino Romano cheese.
Guanciale is a type of Italian cured meat made from the pig cheek and jowl.
People often ask if it is possible to use bacon or pancetta instead to make carbonara. Obviously, everything is possible, but bacon and pancetta, not only come from a different part of the animal, are also not cured like guanciale and surely doesn’t have the same depth in flavor so the final result will never be the same.
In this recipe we are keeping guanciale and eggs, adding smoked tuna, but leaving out Pecorino Romano because cheese usually don’t pair well with seafood as the strong cheese flavor can overpower the seafood.
Instead of cheese we are using bottarga: a delicacy of salted, cured fish roe, typically of the grey mullet (like in this case) or the bluefin tuna.
This is rich and beautifully savory dish, reminiscent of carbonara but with the taste of the sea, a little bit smoky.
  • Difficulty: Easy
  • Time of Preparation: 30 min
  • Time of Cooking:  15 min
  • Doses for: 4 people


1 spaghetti Adoro bag (500g)

2 whole eggs

4 yolks

1 cup guanciale, cut in long strips

2 cups smoked tuna, cut in cubes

2 tablespoons finely chopped parsley

4 tablespoons bottarga, grated


1. Start by boiling a large pot of salted water.

2. Cut the guanciale in ¼ inch slices and then into ¼ inch strips.

3. Pour the pieces of guanciale into a sauté pan and cook for about 10/12 minutes over low-medium heat, to render the fat and get it crispy. Once crispy, remove it from the pan and turn off the heat.

4. Cut the smoked tuna in cubes (save a couple of tablespoons for garnish) and add it in the pan, off the heat, with the guanciale fat.

5. Crack the 4 yolks and 2 whole eggs in a bowl.

6. Chop the parsley and set aside.

7. Cook the spaghetti in boiling water and cook them al dente. Strain the spaghetti very al dente, reserving one cup of the pasta water and add the pasta to the pan.

8. Add a few ladles of pasta water and mix continuously to create a sauce with the guanciale’s fat.

9. Add all the crispy guanciale, but a couple of tablespoons to keep for garnish. 

10. Add the parsley.

11. Remove from the heat and pour the whisked eggs into the pan. Stir quickly to combine to obtain the famous carbonara creamy sauce.

12. If needed, you can add a little pasta water.


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