I've saved this recipe up as one of the most brilliant and amazing things I've ever created in my kitchen and I decided that I'm ready to finally share it.
No really, this is one of the craziest recipes I've ever seen and what makes it strange is that this fettucini alfredo recipe is healthy, easy and good for you.
If you love alfredo as I do but feel as if you're betraying your body with every bite of fat-laden goodness then this is your lucky day.
Regular alfredo recipes use butter and cream then reduces the sauce to thicken but this . . . THIS version has got a secret ingredient: cashews.
If you puree the cashews and add plain old water to create a runny mixture then heat it on the stove top it thickens just as if you were using flour or cornstarch or some other less-healthy invention. While there still is fat in the recipe, the overall fat is reduced and then instead of using the unhealthy saturated fats found found in butter and cream you get the healthy monosaturated fats found in nuts.
So how does it taste? Terrific! The key is to making sure you blend the nuts enough to make a smooth texture. You want to pulse and pulse and grind until you get a butter-like consistency and then add the water a little at a time.
It tastes slightly different than regular alfredo but not unpleasantly so--more nutty and roasted as you'd expect which blends well with the Parmesan. The kids call it fettutroni--rather than fettucini. I'm not sure why, that was just their quirkiness coming out but the name has stuck. Fettutroni it is.
1 cup cashew pieces
2 1/2 cups warm water
1/2 tablespoon minced garlic
salt and pepper to taste
1/2 cup grated Parmesan
18 ounces linguini
chopped fresh parsley for garnish (optional)
In a food processor pulse the cashews until they form a paste then add a bit of the water and continue to process until you've got a smooth texture (or as close as you can get to smooth).
Set aside, then in a saucepan heat a tablespoon or two of olive oil and saute the minced garlic until it's beginning to brown slightly. Add the cashew/water mixture, stirring and scraping as it heats, until it begins to boil and thicken. Once thickened, removed from heat and stir in the salt, pepper and Parmesan, stirring until melted.
Boil the linguini and drain then add to the cashew mixture and stir to coat the noodles. Serve with chopped fresh parsley if desired.
And speaking of glorious fat. Have I mentioned that I totally love hot dogs? I know, I know. It's not something that one confesses in polite company but seriously I love them. Especially sliced up in macaroni and cheese. White trash through and through but oh how I love it.
Anyway, Oscar Mayer is doing something wonderful and giving away a million packages of hot dogs just in time for summer so if you'd like your free package go to Oscar Mayer's website and fill out the form. Yippeeee!
Sponsored by Beau-Coup for unique baby shower favors.