Real alfredo should never (never!) include cream; the silky sauce is the result of an emulsion between the grated cheese, melted butter, and starchy pasta water. This is part of BA’s Best, a collection of our essential recipes.
12 ounces fettuccine or other long pasta
¼ cup (½ stick) unsalted butter
¾ cup finely grated Parmesan, plus more for serving
Freshly ground black pepper
Cook pasta in a large pot of boiling salted water, stirring occasionally, until very al dente. Drain, reserving 2 cups pasta cooking liquid.
Transfer 1 cup pasta cooking liquid to a large skillet. Bring to a gentle simmer, then whisk in butter, a piece at a time, until melted. Whisking constantly, gradually add cheese, making sure it’s completely melted and incorporated before adding more. Add pasta and toss to coat, adding more pasta cooking liquid as needed, until sauce blankets noodles completely. Serve topped with pepper and more cheese.
Recipe by Carla Lalli Music Photograph by Michael Graydon & Nikole Herriott
I (& my son…her daddy) have to whip this up regularly for my granddaughter Lily; it’s her favorite!
I know….I’ve posted about Lily and her Alfredo obsession. But to be honest…for brunch, lunch or after school, I go whatever’s easiest route 😉
So I spotted something new in the store. “Pronto” pasta? Made for the ease of one pot meals. Start with pasta right in the pot of cold water. No straining/draining of pasta water and make/add your other ingredients to same pot.
The conclusion? It didn’t make any difference to me. Maybe with a different recipe? Or getting use to it? Like teaching an old dog new tricks?
I prefer fettuccine, linguine, bucatini or HOMEMADE pasta with Alfredo myself; but Lily LOVES penne.
LILY’S PENNE ALFREDO
I’m hearing “The Lazy Song” by Bruno Mars in my head. Not just because of the Pronto Pasta but also I had already typed & printed out the recipe once, I didn’t feel like typing it again….
I left it for using regular pasta, in general (cook pasta according to directions) …that’s what I still use.
I did use a little sprinkle of garlic/parm seasoning.
“This classic Italian dish includes fettuccine tossed with butter and Parmesan cheese, and it’s quick and easy to make. U.S. versions of the dish may include chicken or shrimp. Whatever your choice, with three simple steps in our chicken alfredo recipe, you’ll have a hearty dinner on the table in no time!” — Martha Stewart
1 pound chicken■
Ground white pepper
2 tablespoons unsalted butter
2 cups heavy cream
4 cloves garlic, peeled
3/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese, plus more for serving
1 pound fettucine
Cut chicken in strips. Season with salt and white pepper and saute in butter.■
Meanwhile in a separate pot, simmer garlic cloves in cream for 10 minutes.
Pour cream into pan with chicken, removing garlic cloves. Stir in Parmesan. Cook pasta according to package instructions.
Toss pasta with sauce and serve with extra Parmesan.
■ You can cook the chicken any way you like. Try grilling it, baking, it, or poaching it in chicken stock.
Or even use a rotisserie chicken from Deli 😉
If you prefer to mingle the flavors, leave it in the pan as you cook the sauce.