I feel like alfredo always gets a bad rap because it can be super fatty—like when you order it at a chain restaurant and it is probably made mostly of some kind of fake dairy product or weird by-product fat that did not come from an animal. Animal fat is not bad for you—in moderation. Especially those animal fats which melt at a high temperature, like duck fat. Which is how I typically justify duck fat fries, though I don’t eat them often enough where I should have to justify them, but still.
I like to make pasta alfredo from scratch because it’s just so easy. And please keep in mind that this recipe is not a “traditional” pasta alfredo. It does not call for any eggs and literally will take less time to cook than the pasta will, so pay attention and try not to be too impatient (like me). Since I don’t like to have any meals that exclude vegetables, I almost always add broccoli to my alfredo and most times I add chicken, which is optional here.
The other night, after a nice strength-building workout at the gym, I whipped this together for Mike and I in enough time that I almost didn’t realize I was famished from my workout. It is super important to me that I’m able to put something together quickly after I exercise—even though I always snack beforehand—because I have no patience when it comes to my hunger. And yes, I get hangry and it’s not pretty.
This recipe does not need much introduction or explanation, so I will let it speak for itself. Here she is:
Pasta with Homemade Alfredo Sauce and Broccoli
Prep time: 5 minutes
Cook time: 10-15 minutes
Total time: 20 minutes
½ lb. pasta of choice, (penne and gemelli are my personal favorites)
¼ cup heavy whipping cream (they sell it in this size at the market)
¼ cup grated Parmesan cheese (or Romano, or cheddar, or whatever flavor you are feeling)
3-4 crowns of broccoli, chopped into florets
1 clove garlic, minced
1 ½ Tbsp. olive oil
1 ½ Tbsp. butter
Salt & pepper to taste
Methodology & Instructions:
- Steam in a small sauce pot, with the olive oil, garlic and salt & pepper, over medium heat.
- Depending on how mushy you like your broccoli, this should only take 5-8 minutes. Avoid raising the heat so that the garlic cooks but doesn’t burn.
- Start your water boiling for your pasta. If you’re unsure of how much water, etc., read the instructions on the pasta box. 🙂 Once the water is boiling and the pasta is in the pot, move to step 2.
- Over medium-low heat, melt butter in a large saucepan.
- Once it’s nice and melty, add the heavy cream and increase to medium heat. The cream will eventually begin bubbling and thickening. This is good. Stir often to avoid sticking and lower the heat if it begins thickening too quickly.
- Once the pasta is fairly al dente (not fully cooked by any manner), strain and add to alfredo sauce. Keep the heat on the pan, letting the pasta cook in the sauce and marry a little bit. (That’s what my mom likes to call it.)
- Add the cheese after 3-4 minutes, but be careful because you need to serve almost immediately. Make sure the pasta is cooked to your desired chewiness before adding the cheese.
- Lastly, toss the broccoli in with the pasta and toss to coat. The garlic will add a little extra flavor to the alfredo, too.
- Kill the heat, plate this deliciousness and enjoy.
Until next time,
♥ Food Snob