Friday, December 15, 2006

Brie & Bacon Fettuccine Recipe



I love the story of stone soup. I love it for all the wrong reasons. You know the story, right? The moral is that by sharing what one has, everyone eats well. But for me, I am like the greedy villagers, still amazed that soup can be made with a stone.

While not quite stone soup, you might think of this as "stone pasta". A dish of plain pasta it is made better with a bit of bacon, onion and a knob of brie. The resulting dish is kind of like Spaghetti Carbonara only faster and easier, and possibly even tastier. And I love Spaghetti Carbonara!

Brie has long been considered by many to be the most popular of all French cheeses. It comes from a province once called, "Brie" now called Seine-et-Marne which is not that far from Paris (and now more famous for being the site of a Disney Resort). Real brie is made from unpasteurized cow's milk but the version available in the US is made from pasteurized milk so the resulting cheese is milder and less ripe than true brie.

Though it's a shame we can't get the real deal, our ersatz brie is still pretty tasty. It is very rich and when heated it melts to an oozy sticky sauce like consistency with a tangy bite that is perfect for pasta. When melted, a little brie goes a very long way. This recipe calls for 1/4 cup which is about 10 grams of fat. But that tiny bit of cheese flavors the entire dish.

Note: You could easily leave out the bacon and make this a vegetarian dish. But you know what they say --everything's better with bacon...

Brie & Bacon Fettuccine
serves 2 - 3 as a main dish or 4 as a starter

Ingredients

1/2 lb fettuccine
1/2 large onion, thinly sliced
2 strips of bacon, chopped
1/4 cup brie, rind removed
1/4 cup of pasta water (water the pasta has cooked in)
black pepper
parmesan cheese

Instructions

In a large skillet saute the bacon and onion slowly over medium heat until bacon begins to crisp and onion is light brown. Meanwhile cook the pasta in salted water until al dente.

Take the pasta out of the water with tongs and place in the skillet with the onion and bacon. Add the brie. Toss with the pasta water. When the brie melts, add a good grind of black pepper and serve with a scant sprinkling of parmesan cheese on each serving.

Enjoy!