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Photo by: Joseph De Leo
I once ate true Fettuccine Alfredo at Ristorante D’Alfredo in Rome, where a giant picture of its namesake owner hangs on the wall. The big flavors of the dish were brought to bear by combining outsized amounts of butter and Parmigiano-Reggiano. It was that simple: butter and cheese. Not so simple, though, if you’re watching your waistline. This version eliminates the cream that many American versions call for but retains a little bit of the butter for flavor. The velvety smooth texture is re-created with yogurt and thickened chicken broth. It may not be as authentic as the original, invented by Alfredo di Lelio, but it’s a very tasty version we can all live with (for a very long time).
1. Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Add the fettuccine and cook according to the package directions, 9 to 11 minutes; drain.
2. While the pasta is cooking, melt the butter in a large nonstick saute pan over medium heat. Add the garlic and cook until it is fragrant, about 2 minutes.
3. Meanwhile, combine the cornstarch and nutmeg in a small bowl. Whisk in the chicken broth until smooth. Pour the mixture into the saute pan, raise the heat, and bring the sauce to a simmer, whisking occasionally. Whisk in ½ cup of the cheese until it has melted. Remove the saute pan from the heat and whisk in the yogurt until the sauce is smooth.
4. In a large bowl, toss the cooked fettuccine with the Alfredo sauce. Season with salt and pepper to taste, if desired. Top the pasta with the remaining ¼ cup cheese, and serve.
Nutritional information is provided by the author.