It may have been the year of slimming things down in the Stirring The Pot kitchen, but the #1 FAVORITE RECIPE OF 2021 does anything but slim things down.
To be fair, 2021 was full of tough times and comfort food was necessary. Ruth Reichl's Fettuccine Alfredo did a perfect job of comforting my family. This is THE BEST recipe for Fettuccine Alfredo I've ever tried and since I stumbled across this recipe, at the end of September, I have made this no less than 25 times.
There is a reason I've made it so many times. First, it requires a simple handful of ingredients that are always on hand: pasta, cream, Parmigiano-Reggiano, butter, and salt and pepper. I have made this for myself using traditional pasta and I have made this mostly for my 15 year-old son who is gluten free and it works like magic every single time. If you're ever in doubt how to fill up a 15 year-old boy who works out for hours upon hours and has the hunger of 10 men, try making him some of this fettuccine alfredo. It works like a charm, every. single.time.
I realize this is not healthy in the least, but it is fast and delicious and you can have it ready in the time it takes to boil a pot of pasta. Plus, this is foolproof, every single time!
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Ruth Reichl's Fettuccine Alfredo
Ok, so Ruth's Fettuccine Alfredo was the #1 recipe of 2021 by default, simply because it was THE RECIPE that I cooked on repeat in 2021, but if I had to pick my favorite recipe that I made, and the one that I would make if time wasn't a factor, it would hands down be Ina Garten's Rigatoni with Sausage and Fennel. I could tell you a million things about how it is probably THE BEST PASTA DISH I'VE EVER COOKED, and it is, but I will sum it up by saying that I text everyone I know who loves to cook, and some who don't, and told them IF THEY EVER MADE ONE RECIPE I SUGGESTED, IT SHOULD BE THIS ONE! Don't even worry if you don't like fennel! You will in this recipe. Don't skimp on any ingredients. Make it exactly as it is written! You will thank me. It is incredible! Definitely entertaining-worth. Definitely THE DISH to pull out if you want to impress someone.
Ina Garten's Rigatoni with Sausage and Fennel
For years and years I wanted to make Pork Chops with Sauteed Apples and Cider Cream Sauce and I finally got around to it. Guess what? It was love at first bite and now I can see myself making this every fall season. A real favorite, especially that cider cream sauce.
Ruth Reichl's Pork Chops with Sauteed Apples and Cider Cream Sauce
It's no secret that I love eggs! They are a star ingredient in the Stirring The Pot kitchen. I also love a recipe inspired by the farmer's market and on a trip to the Lexington Farmer's Market I got all kinds of glorious fresh herbs. I always turn to Mark Bittman when I have an ingredient I want to cook with and he came through with his recipe for a Bread Frittata. Now, you know we love potatoes here at Stirring The Pot, but bread is the way to go in a frittata and I learned that lesson when I made this dish! The bread retains its shape so well and really holds up well in the eggs, adding much more texture than potato and also really allowing the herbs to shine. The bread frittata is my new go-to for a quick breakfast. This has become another staple recipe, something akin to a Kitchen Sink Frittata, allowing me to use up all kinds of bits n' bobs of leftover bread, cheese, herbs, meat, and veggies.
Mark Bittman's Herby Bread Frittata
You simply CANNOT have a favorites roundup without a dessert, and Jamie Oliver's Peanut Butter & Jelly Brownies are the stuff of dreams! I mean how can you go wrong with a dense chocolatey brownie with swirls of peanut butter cream and jelly, dotted with raspberries? Heaven. Just total heaven.
Jamie Oliver's Peanut Butter & Jelly Brownies
And that's a wrap, folks. I wish you all a healthy, safe, happy, and DELICIOUS New Year!