September 16, 2008

father-in-law's fettucine alfredo

OMG, folks. My mother-in-law asked for a recipe. Isn't she sweet? Man, I am SO in with this family. Just kidding.

Hi Mindy - [my father-in-law] has been raving about some spinach/pasta dish you made while he was there. Could you send me the recipe whenever you get a chance?

Heehee! They love me. Oh, it was just a spontaneous pasta dish. Let's see, I like to keep a bag of frozen choppped spinach in the freezer for quick meals. We already had about 1/2 lb of wheat capellini cooked, so I just rejuvenated that in the microwave with a little water. (I know, the "foodies" have stopped reading already. Didn't I mention I'm A BIG CHEAT!? Okay, not as much as that blonde lady that has that cooking show comprised of making layered fruit desserts and decorating store-bought pastries, but still.)

  1. First I cooked about 3 cloves of chopped garlic in 1 1/2 T olive oil, and kind of roasted it, stirring or shaking constantly so it didn't burn, but the garlic was browned. I poured all that off, oil and garlic, into a dish and set it aside.

  2. Then I put maybe 2 cups of frozen spinach in a skillet with a pat of butter on medium heat.

  3. When the spinach started to soften, I added about 1/3 or 1/2 cup of 1% milk and reduced the heat. I probably added some ground pepper and salt. Then, I snuck in a tablespoon of cream.

  4. While that reduced, I cooked 2 links of sliced italian chicken sausage in a pan, and set it aside. I also grated about 1/3 cup Parmesan finely.

  5. When the spinach mixture had reduced, I quickly added about 1/2 of the Parmesan and mixed it. I tossed that with the reserved oil and garlic, and plated the pasta/spinach/garlic mix.

  6. Then, to serve, I topped with the sausage and a little more parmesan.

I think it was my "cheat" at fettuccine Alfredo. It didn't have nearly as much dairy and fat, but has the same creamy hint, garlic, and pepper that fettuccine Alfredo has! P.S., next time I'll add more spinach for more balance. You know how much it cooks up, and I always underestimate it! I had a lunch today at work that cooked down to about a teaspoon of spinach. What was I thinking?

Anyway, that was my first more-than-2-pot meal in weeks. And, yeah, no pic. You'll have to be satisfied with this shot of one of the two fantastic mesquite trees in our new backyard!


  1. How awesome, your efforts have been noticed!

  2. Sounds like an awesome way to lighten up the usually heavy (but tasty) the alfredo sauce. Love the blog, still reading thru it!