Saturday, October 4, 2008

Creamy Gorgonzola Fettuccine

Cows near Heiligenblut
Originally uploaded by Skyhawk Flyer
Friday afternoon, half an hour before I leave work: what do I want to eat tonight? For some reason the first thing that came to mind was pasta in a creamy gorgonzola/walnut sauce. I googled the words and the below recipe came up. This recipe was in Cooking Light in 2000. Below is the recipe and far below is what I actually did. Why do I have a photo of cows, you ask? Well, Gorgonzola is a cheese from cows.

Creamy Gorgonzola Fettuccine
8 ounces uncooked fettuccine
3 cups (1-inch) diagonally sliced asparagus (about 10 ounces)
2 teaspoons butter or stick margarine
4 garlic cloves, minced
1 tablespoon all-purpose flour
1 1/4 cups fat-free milk
1/4 cup (2 ounces)
1/3-less-fat cream cheese
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup (2 ounces) Gorgonzola or other blue cheese, crumbled
2 tablespoons chopped walnuts, toasted
Freshly ground black pepper (optional)

Cook pasta in boiling water 6 minutes, omitting salt and fat. Add asparagus, and cook 2 minutes or until tender.

While pasta is cooking, melt butter in a medium saucepan over medium-high heat. Add garlic, and cook for 3 minutes. Add flour; cook 30 seconds, stirring constantly. Gradually add milk, stirring well with a whisk. Stir in cream cheese and salt; cook 3 minutes or until thick, stirring constantly.

Drain pasta and asparagus; place in a large bowl. Add sauce; tossing to coat. Serve with Gorgonzola and walnuts, and sprinkle with pepper, if desired.

What I did:

For starters, I bought asparagus (Spargel! white asparagus) and maybe the first clue should have been that buying it in October isn't likely to yield high quality. The first thing I did was to start to prep it, and after cutting roughly 1/4 of the bunch I tasted a few slices and literally spit them out. Too bitter! I wasn't about to gamble on all this food and cook them anyway in the hopes that they would taste better after cooking. In the garbage they went. It is a shame...

Because the fettucine was 12 oz and not 8 I decided to enlarge the sauce ingredients slightly. 3T of butter, for instance. 2T of flour, maybe even a little more. 1.5 cups of milk - 2%. 3 oz of cream cheese (the only thing that was light in this entire recipe!). 3/4 of a cup of gorgonzola cheese. I also stirred the cheese directly into the milk/butter/cream cheese combo which was cooking. I didn't think merely crumbling it on top would be the same effect - I wanted sauce! I didn't toast the walnuts. That may be a good idea.

I now have an entire 2 cup container of gorgonzola sauce in the fridge, even after having my meal last night. It was very good, and scratched my itch. (Now what am I going to do with all that sauce??)

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