Comfort food ~ a phrase that is used ever so often by many of us! What is comfort food? Is it one particular food item or is it one particular cuisine or is it always the same dish or does it keep changing with our mood? In our home, each one of us has a comfort food, from different cuisines and more times than not we take turns making and eating each of our favorite.
One day it is the yummy Rasam (a thin tomato – tamarind soup from the South India) with a side of crispy potatoes, another day it is Chapati and Paneer Butter Masala and occasionally we go International, ranging from Quesadillas to Pizza to Noodles and many more! YES ! Food from around the world in the comfort of our home…..sounds comfortable and yummy right?!?
Pasta ~ another favorite meal at home, part of the kids’ comfort food list, be it baked pasta, ravioli, lasagna,pasta in any shape, form and size…. they love pasta. The top favorite is obviously pasta covered in copious amounts of cheese, with a side of oven roasted or steamed broccoli. This mama, makes the best of the pasta meals by adding in as many veggies as possible to it. Especially when I am making a pasta casserole, sneak in those veggies !
Alfredo Pasta is comfort food for the kids here…..something they crave to eat and absolutely relish eating it. The sheer joy on their faces when I swap the marinara for a cheese based sauce is priceless…although not calories-less! But they are children ,they seem to work it off, burn it off, and most importantly they enjoy the meal guilt free…..totally worth it!
In this recipe I have used organic wheat pasta, use any shape or size you like. Fettuccine is the classic version but I was out of it and this worked really well with the sautéed peppers.
Easy, a few ingredients only, mix match what you have and like, add a few spice mix to elevate its taste and do the happy dance when they polish it off…..including the peppers ! WOOHOO !
This recipe makes at least 2 quarts of alfredo sauce, I used most of it for pasta and saved the rest for a white sauce pan pizza. One stone two mangoes as they say in a proverb from my town LOL !
Recipe : Alfredo Pasta
|Prep Time : 10 minutes||Cook time : 30 minutes|
|Spice Level – 🌶||Ease Level – 😃|
|Serves – 3||Entree|
- Organic wheat pasta – 250 grams
- Cream cheese – 8 oz pack
- Butter – 1/2 cup or 1 stick
- Garlic powder or crushed garlic – 1 teaspoon or to taste
- Nutmeg powder – 1/8 teaspoon – optional
- Pepper powder / chili flakes – to taste
- Milk – 2 cups – I used reduced fat 2% milk
- Salt to taste
- Parmesan Cheese – 1/2 cup grated or powdered – Use what you have
- Olive oil as needed
- Bell peppers – sliced – 2
- Basil leaves – chopped – 4 or 5 leaves
- Water for boiling pasta
How to :
- First, get the water for pasta going, in a large stockpot or saucepan add at least 4 quarts of water and turn on heat to high. Let the water heat up and come to a good boil. **TIP : if you heat up water in a kettle and then add it to the saucepan/stockpot you can speed things up a bit.
- While the water is set for boiling, prep the rest of the ingredients for the stir fry. Slice bell peppers and crush garlic if usng fresh, chop basil leaves and set aside.
- Sauce ~ Heat a 2 or 3 quart saucepan and add the butter to it first. Once butter melts, add the crushed garlic.
- Next add the cream cheese and whisk thoroughly until well combined without lumps. Mixture should be silky smooth and free of lumps and look thick.
- Next slowly drizzle in the milk and keep whisking making sure to incorporate it well. It will look runny, but continue to whisk and heat it until the mixture thickens. Takes about 5 minutes.
- To this add salt to taste, crushed pepper and the nutmeg powder. We love nutmeg in our béchamel sauce hence I add it here, feel free to skip it.
- Next stir in the parmesan cheese.
- Once the sauce nicely quotes the back of your spoon, it is done. remove and set aside. (Picture below)
- By this time the water for pasta should be boiling, add your pasta and let it cook according to the package time. Keep it al dente.
- Peppers ~ In a skillet, add oil and once it heats up add the bell peppers and fry on medium high heat. Add salt to taste and some garlic. Saute for not more than 4 minutes, tastes best when slightly crunchy. If desired add chili flakes or pepper and finally the chopped basil. Remove from heat and set aside.
- Once pasta is done, drain and add it to a large serving bowl. Drizzle in desired amount of the alfredo sauce and toss well.
- When serving, add pasta to the dinner bowl, top it with the peppers and serve. I usually leave some extra pepper or chili flakes for the ones that need a bit more heat in their pasta dish.
- Garnish with basil if you want that gourmet click and enjoy your meal !
Please do not be intimidated by this long write up, it is an absolutely easy recipe and the flavors mind blowing!
Add more veggies like mushrooms, broccoli ,squash, etc for making it more green and wholesome. A simple side salad is also a great addition to this meal.
Make it your own and enjoy it as much as we did !
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