"Gypsy gold does not chink and glitter. It gleams in the sun and neighs in the dark."

~ Saying of the Gladdagh Gypsies of Galway

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Easy [Real Food] Weeknight Meal: Pasta Alfredo

There are many versions of Homemade Alfredo sauce floating around in cookbooks and websites. This is my take. It is super easy and the ingredients are all pantry staples for me so it makes for a quick weeknight meal. You can jazz it up many ways which is always a bonus. . And remember, it is made with REAL food, so though you might be counting calories, these are HEALTHY calories. Just try to not eat it every day - though that may be hard :)

Homemade Alfredo

12 oz Pasta Noodles of your choice ( you can do 8 oz of noodles, one box, and you'll have a little more saucy pasta. It will also serve less. 12 oz of noddles serves hubby and I am leaves lunch leftovers)
4 tbsp butter
1 clove garlic, diced*
1 small shallot, diced*
1 cup whipping cream
1 cup whole milk
1.5 cup shredded Parmesan Cheese (I recommend getting a nice hard chunk to shave, rather than use the proceesed, preshredded kind in a baggie. Trust me, you will taste the difference)
1/4 tsp black pepper
1/2 tsp salt + (add more if you feel it is needed, to taste)

*these are optional but I like to add them

I do this in one pot to save on clean up, but it takes some extra time since you have to wait for the noodle to boil. If you are in a real hurry, use two pots/pans so you can make the sauce while the noodles cook.

Bring pot of water to a boil with some salt and olive oil. Cook noodles. While noodles cook, dice your garlic and shallot and grate your cheese. Pick up the child hanging from your leg, turn on the radio and have a dance party while you feed him pieces of the shaved cheese. Get your servings of milk & cream ready and set aside your s&p.

Once noodles are cooked, drain and set aside in your colander. Place pot back on stove (I use my Le Cruset 'knock-off' dutch oven! LOVE IT!) and melt butter. Add your garlic and shallot and stir continuously for a minute or two until it smells heavenly. Be careful not to burn. Medium heat should work fine. Then, pour in your milk and cream, add your s&p and bring to a boil. Then, take heat down to medium and stir almost constantly until the mixture thickens some - about 5 minutes. Now, remove from the heat, stir in your cheese to melt and then give it a taste to see if any more seasoning is needed.

Once cheese is melted in, add in your noddles and mix well to incorporate. Enjoy!

# Additions I like to add to this when I can are steamed broccoli. The Babe LOVES the broccoli with the alfredo sauce on it. No joke, he screams when he is ready for another piece. Other options would be to add chicken or shrimp...or jazz up the sauce a tad with some herbs. I have mentioned a time or two my husband isn't big on the herbs so this is one dish I keep pretty simple and it wins every time. And it's super easy to make.

If you are still stumped on what to whip up tonight for a Valentine's Day meal - this would be a good choice!


~Jen said...

Sounds good! Have you ever tried making a dish with half alfredo & half spaghetti/marinara sauce? Carabba's uses that combo with their ravioli, it's so good!

Susan said...

I have tears. This was one of Kelly's favorite entrees. The recipe looks wonderful and I'm sure I will make it. Happy Valentine's Day! XOXO

Mary said...

Mmmm, there is nothing quite like an awesome homemade alfredo! Nice choice for the best possible REAL food! Happy Valentines Day!

Unknown said...

Susan - **HUGS**