500g (1lb) spaghetti salt and black pepper 175g (6oz) diced pancetta or streaky bacon, any rinds removed 1 garlic clove, crushed 4 eggs 125g (4oz) parmesan cheese, grated 150ml (¼ pint ) single cream chopped parsley to garnish .

Cook’s know-how
It is best to buy a whole piece of parmesan cheese and grate the quantity you need for a given dish. Ready grated parmesan in packets is less economical and lacks the flavour of freshly grated parmesan.

1- Cook the spaghetti in a large saucepan of boiling salted water according to packet instructions.
2- Meanwhile, put the pancetta or bacon into a frying pan and heat gently for a few minutes until the fat runs. Increase the heat and add the garlic. Cook for 2-3 minutes or until the bacon is crisp.
3- Break the eggs into a bowl. Add the bacon and garlic mixture, using a slotted spoon. Add the parmesan cheese, season generously with salt and pepper, and whisk until well blended.
4- Drain the spaghetti and return to the hot pan. Stir in the bacon and egg mixture and toss quickly until the egg just begins to set. Stir in the cream and heat gently. Serve at once, sprinkled with parsley.

Spaghetti Alfredo
Heat 150ml (¼ pint ) double cream with 30g (1oz) butter until the mixture. Add 90ml (3fl oz ) more cream, 90g (3oz) parmesan cheese, a pinch of grated nutmeg, and season with salt and pepper. Heat gently until thickened, and serve.