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Alla Panna
Cream Sauce [Alfredo Sauce]

From The Fine Art of Italian Cooking, by Giuliano Bugialli

[This recipe assumes you are using fresh tagliatelle or fettuccine, either homemade or store-bought. If you are using dried pasta, you will have to cook it as long as required by the instructions on the package.]

In Italy, there are two kinds of heavy cream, that used for whipping and an almost solid cream used for cooking. For this dish you would use whipping cream, which fortunately corresponds to the heavy cream, or whipping cream, we find elsewhere.


12 tablespoons (6 ounces) sweet butter
2 cups heavy cream
1 tablespoon olive or vegetable oil
Pinch of salt
4 ounces freshly grated Parmigiano
Freshly ground white pepper
Freshly grated nutmeg


Place a stockpot containing a large quantity of cold water on the heat. After about 10 minutes, when the water is giving off steam but is not yet boiling, place a frying pan containing the butter over the stockpot to melt the butter. Keep the butter warm, but do not allow it to boil.

When the water is boiling vigorously, add coarse salt to taste, then the fresh pasta. The pasta will rise to the surface almost immediately. Quickly drain it in a colander.

Place the frying pan containing the butter over very low heat and add the cooked pasta. Toss gently with two forks.

Add the heavy cream, unheated, and the Parmigiano, and keep tossing gently until the sauce is homogenously creamy (about 1 minute). Sprinkle with white pepper and nutmeg and serve.

Yield: Serves 6

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