Carmelo, Anthony and Joe Cipri are the three brothers behind Sydney restaurant Cipri Italian. When they and their families decided to open Barbetta next door, it was to fill a specific gap. “We've got the restaurant,” says Rose Cipri, Joe's wife. “But we wanted somewhere people could pop in sit up at the bar like they do in Italy, grab a coffee and then something to take home.”
That could be a slab of Bologna-style lasagne, a bag of Sicilian-style granola, or a pistachio bombolone. But while the 1940s-look diner takes a lot of inspiration from Italy, it's also distinctly Australian.
“In Italy they have a cappuccino and a cake, brioche or cornetto – the Italian version of a croissant – for breakfast. They don't have eggs or anything like that,” Rose says. “Australians are very different. We all like to go out for breakfast and brunch.”
And so, Carbonara Australiana was born.
“It’s take on a traditional Roman dish cacio e pepe – cheese and pepper spaghetti – Joe says. “It's probably our most popular breakfast dish.”
Barbetta’s Carbonara Australiana
Cooking time: 10 minutes
8 rashers bacon
4 tsp ground pepper (or to taste)
60g Pecorino Romano, grated
4 large slices or 8 small slices Italian sourdough
1 tbsp salted butter
Grill bacon rashers in a pan or under a griller on high heat for about 2 minutes on each side, until semi crispy.
Toast the bread.
Whisk together the eggs, cream, pecorino and pepper in a bowl.
In a pan on high heat, melt butter and add the egg mixture. Continuously stir eggs with a spatula until they reach scramble consistency; about 2 minutes.
Place the toast on a plate and spoon the egg mixture on top. Garnish each plate with 2 pieces of bacon.
This is an extract from The Broadsheet Italian Cookbook, which features 80 recipes from Australia's best restaurants, cafes and bars.