Monday, February 3, 2014

Chicken Fettuccine Armando

slave might sound like Sophia Patrillo, but picture this: Rome, in 1908
A man named Alfredo di Lelio was trying to make a living working in his mothers restaurant. His wife was pregnant and having trouble keeping food down. So he takes a common dish called “fettuccine al burro” and adds much more butter to it. She liked it! It worked. He started to serve it to his guests. One night in 1927, an American couple on their honeymoon liked it so much that the next day they presented Alfredo with a fork and spoon made out of pure gold! It was the first “super star couple”: Mary Pickford and Douglas Fairbanks.

PLEASE NOTE CLARIFICATION FROM THE GRANDSON, ABOUT THIS STORY and the correct dates!  Thank You Again Ines Di Lelio!

Well with their endorsement EVERYBODY had to try it. His restaurant became a must visit for all American tourists visiting Rome.
Today in American Italian-style establishments you will see “Fettuccine Alfredo” on all the menus. But not so much in Italy or even most of Europe! It's an “American Thing”.
Basically a pasta dish made with cheese, butter, and cream. What's not to love? Except all the fat!

slave calls this: Chicken Fettuccine Armando
It is NOT loaded with cheese, butter and cream. Instead its creaminess comes from steamed cauliflower. So it should have its own name and since Armando was the son of Alfredo, and without him “in the oven” as it were, who knows if this dish would ever have been made! Yes, that is how food legend portrays the story of this yummy, gooey comfort food. Hungry? Lets go!

1 lbs chicken breast tenderloins
2 cups cauliflower florets, about
½ head of cauliflower
1 cup low-sodium chicken broth
8 ounces whole grain fettuccine pasta
1 teaspoon extra-virgin olive oil
or canola if that's what you have.
2 cloves garlic, minced
½ cup low-fat evaporated milk
Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper
¾ cup frozen petite peas, thawed, (4 ounces)
¼ cup grated Parmesan cheese
1 t
bs unsalted butter
tbs. chopped fresh parsley, plus extra for garnish
1 ½
tsp. finely grated lemon zest optional

1. Put the cauliflower, broth, and 1 cup water in a small pot; bring to a boil over medium-high heat. Adjust the heat to maintain a simmer and cook until the cauliflower is very soft, 25 to 30 minutes. Remove from the heat and cool 5 minutes. Carefully puree cauliflower and all the liquid in a blender until very smooth; set aside.

2. Meanwhile, bring a large pot of salted water to a boil and cook the pasta until al dente, 8 minutes. Drain well, reserving about 1 cup pasta cooking water.

3. Heat the oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Sprinkle the chicken tenderloins with salt and pepper to taste. (slave chose these because it just wanted a taste of chicken and this only cost $2.31 for the package). Saute until golden brown and thoroughly cooked. About 5 mins both sides.. they cook very fast!

Remove to a plate, add the garlic and cook until fragrant, about 30 seconds.

Next the cauliflower puree and evaporated milk and bring to a simmer. Cook until slightly thickened, 5 minutes and season with salt and pepper. Stir in the peas until heated through, 2 minutes. Toss in the cooked pasta, Parmesan cheese and about ½ cup of pasta water if needed until the noodles are coated but the sauce is still loose. Remove from the heat and toss in the butter, chopped parsley and lemon zest. (If the sauce seems thick, adjust the consistency with the remaining pasta water). Serve immediately sprinkled with chopped parsley. 

Note: in the pictures, slave used much less pasta than called for. This is NOT one of those restaurants where they can hardly carry out the huge platters of food!
No it does not taste like it had a ton of butter, cream, and cheese. Still it has a great natural taste! Slave thinks you will enjoy it!

Serving my Master Indy
To satisfy and restore.
To nourish, support and maintain.
To gratify, spoil, comfort and please,
to nurture, assist, and sustain
..I cook!

Please buy slave's cookbook:

The Little Black Book of Indiscreet Recipes by Dan White via @amazon

You might have to copy and paste that in your web browser. Or just go to and search for
The Little Black Book of Indiscreet Recipes
by Dan White.



    With reference of your article I have the pleasure to tell you the history of my grandfather Alfredo Di Lelio, who is the creator of “fettuccine all’Alfredo” in 1908 in restaurant run by his mother Angelina in Rome, Piazza Rosa (Piazza disappeared in 1910 following the construction of the Galleria Colonna / Sordi).
    Alfredo di Lelio opened the restaurant “Alfredo” in 1914 in Rome, after leaving the restaurant of his mother Angelina.
    In 1943, during the war, Di Lelio sold the restaurant to others outside his family.
    In 1950 Alfredo Di Lelio decided to reopen with his son Armando his restaurant in Piazza Augusto Imperatore n.30 "Il Vero Alfredo" (“Alfredo di Roma”), whose fame in the world has been strengthened by his nephew Alfredo and that now managed by his nephew Ines, with the famous “gold cutlery” (fork and spoon gold) donated in 1927 by two well-known American actors Mary Pickford and Douglas Fairbanks (in gratitude for the hospitality).
    See also the website of “Il Vero Alfredo” .
    I must clarify that other restaurants "Alfredo" in Rome do not belong to the family tradition of "Il Vero Alfredo – Alfredo di Roma" in Rome.
    I inform you that the restaurant “Il Vero Alfredo –Alfredo di Roma” is in the registry of “Historic Shops of Excellence” of the City of Rome Capitale.
    Best regards Ines Di Lelio

    1. I am deeply indebted to you for your clarification! I thank you so much! I feel greatly honored that you have even read my blog, much less taken the time to so carefully guide it with your personal history and knowledge.
      Again Thank You so Much!