This dish is a bit of an oddity - although it was invented in Rome
by an Italian, it's more commonly found in America, and hardly ever seen on the
menus of Italian restaurants in Europe. However, although it's not always
respected as a bona fine Italian dish, I've recently been converted because it
makes for the most wonderful comfort food - it's a dressed up version of my favourite comfort dish, pasta with cheese. Cream, butter and cheese come
together to make a rich, gooey sauce that goes beautifully with tagliatelle or fettucine,
plus it's incredibly quick & easy to make. Normally, this dish is made with
Parmesan, but I've used a nice mature cheddar as I think it works better with
the rich flavours.
A big handful of grated mature cheddar, plus more to serve
Freshly ground black pepper
A small handful of fresh parsley
200g tagliatelle or fettucine
First of all, put your pasta on to boil with a good pinch of salt
in the water, and set a timer according to the instructions on the packet. When
there are only a few minutes left on the timer, start the sauce - put the
butter in a small pan on a medium heat, and once it has melted, pour in the
cream. Stir with a wooden spoon until the sauce starts to thicken, then grate
in the cheddar and stir until it melts.
Drain the pasta, then return to
the pan and pour the sauce over the top. Stir well immediately, as the hot
pasta will help thicken up the sauce. Serve with a sprinkling of fresh parsley
and a generous pinch of freshly-ground black pepper, and wash down with a glass
of red wine - the perfect antidote to a gloomy Monday evening.