ic Kathe With an E: Guest Post With Laura - Now Things Are Cookin'

Friday, November 2, 2012

Guest Post With Laura - Now Things Are Cookin'

While I am off for my son's wedding, I will be sharing some posts from some of my blogging buddies.

Today I am so happy to introduce you to Laura from
 Now Things Are Cookin'.

I love how Laura is stretching her budget 
and is learning to cook all over again
 by cutting out convenience foods to cook more frugally.
Something I really need to relearn now too!

Be sure to stop by Laura's blog and say hi!

Today Laura is sharing her recipe for
Fettuccine Alfredo
(Oh To The Yum!) 

Thank you Laura!

Laura with her 8 year old son.
Hi!  I'm Laura over at Now Things Are Cookin'.  Some of my first memories are of helping my mother and my grandmothers cook.  One grandmother had a special step stool for me to stand on while I helped her stuff the Thanksgiving turkey.  The other used to tell me her baking secrets, like when tasting the batter with her finger "It's okay to lick your finger while you're cooking.  The heat from the oven will burn off any germs!"  When I was in my early teens, my mother suffered terribly from arthritis and couldn't even hold a knife.  She'd stand in the kitchen as I cooked supper telling me what to do as I followed her every instruction.
Over the years, I've gone full circle - loving to cook, to cooking out of necessity, back to enjoying every minute in the kitchen again.  Sometimes I think I would love to go to culinary school.  I also strive to make budget friendly meals for our family while we struggle to get back on our feet again after a series of unfortunate failed job opportunities.
One of the dishes over the last few years that I learned how to make has come to define me as the cook I am now.  My husband greatly enjoys Fettuccine Alfredo.  For years I was afraid to even attempt making Alfredo sauce, thinking it was much too complicated.  In fact, most cream based sauces frightened me.  Fortunately for my husband, for quite a while, he traveled frequently with his work and had a decent expense plan.  So he made sure to get Fettuccine Alfredo while he was on the road. Two or three years ago, my husband and I were talking to the cheese monger in The Fresh Market who asked if we wanted some free Parmesan cheese rinds. (I've since been told by The Fresh Market folks that they no longer give away Parmesan rinds, sadly.)  Not one to turn down a freebie I said yes, but also asked what I should do with them.  She said her favorite thing to make with Parmesan cheese rinds was Alfredo sauce.  "Oh, I'm much too afraid of messing up Alfredo to attempt that!" I said. The cheese monger very politely explained just how easy making Alfredo sauce really was.  Place the cheese rind in a stainless steel pan, pour in some cream and once that has thickened remove the rind and add some freshly grated Parmesan cheese.  Nothing to it, she claimed. I'd always thought Alfredo sauce was much more complicated, involving varying combinations of butter, cream, garlic, olive oil, cream cheese, Parmesan cheese, mozzarella cheese, and/or sherry.  Some Alfredo sauces do have long ingredients lists and seem to be much more complicated than the instructions I was given.  My husband is extraordinarily happy when I make him Fettuccine Alfredo, so I know for certain this recipe works for me. This is not a recipe you can walk away from while it's cooking, so have everything ready before you start the Alfredo.  Have the pasta boiling in the pot, salad made, cheese grated and chicken or broccoli (or both) cooked.  Make sure you set the table first too. You could add minced garlic and/or ground pepper if you'd like, but I wouldn't recommend salt.  The Parmesan will give it plenty of salt.  If I add broccoli at the end, though, I do salt the broccoli while it's steaming.  All measurements are rough estimates.  Don't try to substitute milk or half and half for the heavy cream.  This is not one of those times you can get away with it. If you can't come across Parmesan cheese rinds, you can make this without one.

1/2 pint heavy cream
Approx. 4x3 inch piece of Parmesan cheese rind
1/2 - 3/4 cups of grated Parmesan cheese
8 ounces fettuccine or linguine noodles

Bring 2 quarts of water to boil in a large pot.  Once the water has come to a rolling boil, add pasta. Cook until al dente.  Once your pasta has started cooking, in a stainless steel pan, place a cheese rind in the middle.  Pour in heavy cream.
Over medium to medium high heat, let this come to a nice bubble.  Give it a good stir with a whisk every 30 seconds or so.  Once it has started to bubble and thicken, stir continuously.
After 2 minutes, turn down the heat to medium or medium low and remove rind.  Stir in about 1/2 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese.
Thin with more cream if needed.  See how nice and bubbly it is?  I had to add a couple tablespoons of cream after I took this picture because in that short amount of time, it got too thick for my taste.  Once the cheese has melted, give it a taste.  Add more cheese if you feel it needs it.  Immediately stir in your drained pasta, sauteed chicken and broccoli if desired.


  1. Oh now that looks great! Thanks for sharing...off to check out your blog Laura!! Keep partying Kathe!

    1. Thanks! My husband suggests this almost every time I ask for dinner recommendations.

  2. I love homemade alfredo ... it's so much better than the jarred stuff!

    1. Me too! The jarred stuff just tastes pasty and garlicy to me.

  3. Very simple recipe. I will have to try it this way. Thanks Laura.

  4. The guest post is sharing information about laura and how things are


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