Wednesday, November 10, 2010
Fettucine Alfredo for the Kid at Heart
Ah, the good old days. Remember how it felt to be a kid? Full of energy, laughter, and innocence. The days when it was more fun to share a chair with a friend, even though there were plenty of other chairs around. Everything, and I do mean everything, was funny and you giggled and laughed your way through the day.
Silly, playful, and full of imagination you made up games. For example, maybe you and your friend would do something as simple as recite the alphabet. Just for fun you'd start with the letter "A", pointing to the top of your head, working your way down your body so that the letters "H" and "I" arrived at your chest, and the letter "P" arrived.....well, you get the idea right? Something that silly would send you into hysterics, uncontrollable full-on belly shaking laughter. You laughed so hard it hurt. Your temples ached and your side was burning.
The laughter spread to every room in the house and made the adults smile. Loving the sound of laughter, your Dad gets up and snaps a picture(my friend Julie is on the left, I'm on the right). He says something like "This one will be worth holding onto." As usual, he was right. Years later this is one of your favorite pictures. It reminds you that you're still a kid at heart and that even after all these years your favorite thing to do is laugh.
My favorite thing to do is laugh, but my favorite thing to eat, both back in the day and now, is pasta! The kid in me decided that we wouldn't count calories or fat grams this week. Instead I played innocent and naive and made Fettucine Alfredo, a favorite of my daughter's and also an old favorite of mine. I got out the pasta, cream, butter, and cheese and closed my eyes. My husband asked me if I really needed that all that butter and I put my fingers in my ears, "la....la.....la...I can't hear you, I said."
Adapted from Giada De Laurentiis, recipe found online at Food Network
* 18 ounces fresh fettuccine (I used one pound dried pasta)
* 2 1/2 cups heavy cream
* 1/2 cup fresh lemon juice (I used about 1/4 cup)
* 12 tablespoons unsalted butter (I used 8 tbsp. or one stick)
* 2 cups grated Parmesan
* 2 teaspoons grated lemon zest
* Pinch freshly grated nutmeg
* Salt and freshly ground white pepper
Cook the pasta in a large pot of boiling salted water until tender but still firm to the bite, stirring occasionally, about 4 minutes. Drain.
Stir 2 cups of the cream and the lemon juice in a heavy large skillet to blend. Add the butter and cook over medium heat just until the butter melts, stirring occasionally, about 3 minutes. Remove from the heat.
Add the pasta and toss. Add the remaining 1/2 cup of cream, and Parmesan to the cream sauce in the skillet. Add the lemon zest, nutmeg, salt, and white pepper. Toss the pasta mixture over low heat until the sauce thickens slightly, about 1 minute.
Notes/Results: The alfredo was very indulgent and rich and we did enjoy it. My husband and I enjoyed a small portion with chicken and andouille sausage. My daughter and her friends enjoyed theirs plain. I had read the reviews on this one and heard that the 1/2 cup of lemon juice was too much so I cut it back to about 1/4 cup. I think a little bit of lemon juice is a good thing, but 1/4 cup lemon juice might still be too much. I guess it's all personal preference. Also, this recipe makes a ton of pasta and is best eaten on the day that it's served. If I wasn't serving this to a crowd then I would halve the recipe for sure.
I might feel like a kid at heart, but I don't have the metabolism of one.
Best to save most of it for the kids. They gobbled it up and then wiped out a dozen chocolate chip cookies. Ah, to be a kid again!
Cooking the recipes of Giada De Laurentiis. Feel free to join in the fun....but only if you're prepared to be a kid at heart, which is this week's theme.