Tuesday, April 29, 2014

Tasty Tuesday: Zucchini Alfredo with Fettuccine

My last blog had a weekly feature known as "Tasty Tuesday."  I posted recipes I made at home in an effort to try new recipes more frequently and become a better cook.  I don't want this blog to be a carbon copy of that one (there's a reason I stopped updating it, after all), but I did want to continue the "Tasty Tuesday" segments.

Here's the thing ... I'm not an amazing chef.  I'm also not an amazing photographer.  I'm being very upfront here because I don't want anyone reading this to think I imagine myself to be this super awesome food blogger.  I promise that as much as I'd love to be one, I know I'm just not cut out for it.  The best food bloggers come up with tons of creative recipes and then take stunning photographs of their beautifully plated food.  Let me tell you something ... That won't be happening here.  Sure, I'll tweak a lot of recipes (and, in some cases, I'll make some pretty significant changes), but I won't be coming up with original recipes that often.  That's not to say that I never will ... It just won't be a frequent thing.

In addition, I won't be posting gorgeous pictures of my food.  I may get lucky with a decent shot now and then, but let's be real ... I don't own a fancy camera and, as I said before, I'm not a great photographer (which is probably why I can't justify buying a fancy camera right now).  I'll post pictures ... They just won't be anything like the gorgeous shots you'd see on, say, The Pioneer Woman or Cooking Classy.  Sorry to disappoint.

Despite my shortcomings, I like to share the things I make (and the occasional really amazing meal at a restaurant).  It's fun for me to try new recipes, and who knows?  Maybe I'll inspire someone else to start trying new recipes as well.

I actually posted this recipe on my previous blog, but I wanted to share it here as well.  Why?  Because it's fucking delicious, that's why.

Seriously, though, I'd never attempted to make a homemade alfredo sauce before trying this one, so I was pretty proud of the finished product.  I actually found this recipe while looking for creative ways to use up 4 oz. of leftover cream cheese.  I'll admit that the idea of putting cream cheese in alfredo sauce at first seemed a little ... Gross.

I'm really glad I didn't skip over this recipe, though.  I decided to use the basics of the original and then make a ton of changes.  And, at the risk of sounding like a total douche, I took a good idea and made it great.  The sauce turned out wonderfully (though I might consider using just a little less garlic next time).  This is definitely a recipe I'll be making again.  I'll probably also continue playing around with the basic alfredo sauce recipe in the future to try to come up with some interesting variations.

Zucchini Alfredo with Fettuccine

Zucchini Alfredo with Fettuccine

Adapted from a recipe on allrecipes.com.

Ingredient List:
  • 2 zucchini, diced
  • 1 white onion, diced
  • 4 cloves garlic (or, if you're lazy like me, the equivalent of jarred, pre-minced garlic)
  • 2 tbsp low fat margarine or butter (I used low fat margarine)
  • 1 cup heavy whipping cream
  • 4 oz. cream cheese
  • 2 cups shredded Parmesan cheese
  • 1/4 cup white cooking wine
  • 1 tsp dried basil
  • 1/2 tsp crushed red pepper flakes
  • 2 tsp black pepper
  • 2 tsp garlic salt
  • 1 package fettuccine noodles


1.  Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil.

2.  Melt the margarine or butter in a medium skillet.  Add the garlic and cook for approximately 30 seconds, or until fragrant.

3.  Add the diced zucchini and onion to the skillet and sauté with the butter and garlic for approximately 10 minutes, or until some of the moisture has evaporated.  (I found that even after 10 minutes there was still a considerable amount of moisture, so I strained the contents of the skillet in a colander to avoid adding too much water to the sauce.  I highly recommend this step if it looks at all watery to you!)

4.  Pour the heavy whipping cream into a second large skillet, then add the cream cheese.  Cook over medium heat, stirring until the cream cheese is melted.

5.  Add the Parmesan cheese to the cream cheese mixture.  Stir until mixed well and melted.

6.  Mix in the strained zucchini, onion, and garlic, stirring until well blended.

7.  Season the sauce with basil, crushed red pepper flakes, black pepper, and garlic salt.

8.  Pour in the white cooking wine.  Stir until mixed well.

9.  Allow the sauce to simmer on the lowest heat setting while adding the fettuccine noodles to the pot of boiling water.  Cook according to package directions until al dente and drain.

10.  Pour the sauce over the drained noodles, tossing several times until the noodles are completely coated.

We paired this meal with a simple green salad and wine.  I highly recommend a Reisling (my favorite type of white wine), as it seemed to compliment the flavors in this dish quite well.

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