This dish developed when we had visited a restaurant that was changing its menu: Several items on their old menu were no longer available and their new menu was not ready. I opted for their fettuccine Alfredo and their sautéed vegetables, which they listed as two separate items. Individually they were fine, but after I mixed the vegetables in with the pasta together they became superb.
A few weeks later I combed Alfredo recipes to find a mild cheese sauce then experimented. In the process I learned that a true Alfredo sauce uses only butter and Parmesan cheese. The sauce described below is mostly cream cheese with a little Parmesan to support the slightly peppery taste of fresh from the garden parsley.
This dish serves four people and can be prepared in about 20 minutes if you can manage three pans at once.
- 8 ounces of fettuccine
- 1 tsp salt
- 2 Tbsp canola oil
- 1 medium zucchini shredded length-wise
- 2 carrots shredded length-wise
- 2 clove minced garlic
- 1 medium onion, cut in half length-wise then sliced
- ¼ cup butter
- 4 ounces light cream cheese
- 1 cup skim milk
- 3 ounces Parmesan cheese, grated
- ½ fresh parsley, chopped
While the slated water for the fettuccine comes to a boil in a large pot, shred a medium zucchini and two carrots and slice a medium onion. I used a coarse grater rubbing the vegetables nearly length-wise to yield pieces the thickness of the pasta.
In a small sauce pan melt a quarter cup of butter and 4 ounces of cream cheese over low heat.
When the water comes to a boil add the pasta. Then heat a large frying pan over medium heat. When the pan is hot add 2 tablespoons of oil and the shredded zucchini and carrots, the sliced onion, and the minced garlic, stirring occasionally until the onion is translucent. Meanwhile add the milk and Parmesan cheese to the melted cream cheese stirring frequently until the smooth and slightly thickened.
When the pasta is al dente, drain and transfer to dinner plates. Combine the cream sauce in the frying pan with the sautéed vegetables and chopped parsley. Then pour the vegetables over the spaghetti and enjoy!
When I took these photos I had to substitute spaghetti for fettuccine.