A bowl of fettucine alfredo

Chef Frank's Fettuccine Alfredo

The secret ingredient for guests you really like: thinly shaved truffle.

On the latest episode of Epicurious' 4 Levels series, Chef Frank Proto elevates fettuccine alfredo with Grana Padano and fresh truffles.

"Fettuccine alfredo, the way it's meant to be ... doesn't take a lot of ingredients, and everyone loves it," Chef Frank says. "I serve it during the holidays. It's a labor of love."

He starts with "grandma-style pasta-making — no mixer required," aims for fairly dry pasta for ease of handling and resists rushing the rolling to avoid tearing the pasta.

Chef Frank gives the pasta a deep flavor with cultured butter for creaminess, fresh ground black pepper for sharpness and a wheel of Grana Padana, a close cousin of Parmigiano-Reggiano. He scrapes rather than grating the cheese then shaves truffle paper-thin with a mandolin.

Perhaps his most important pro tip: "It doesn't work well unless you get it all over yourself." Watch the demo in the video and get the complete recipe below.

Recipe

Fettuccine Alfredo

Yields 2 servings

Ingredients

For the pasta:

  • 1 egg
  • 3 egg yolks
  • 1 1/2 pound 00 flour
  • Truffles, sliced fine
  • Salt

For the sauce:

  • 1/3 pound truffle pasta
  • 4 ounces high-fat cultured butter, unsalted
  • 6-8 ounces Grana Padano
  • 1/4 cup sea salt
  • Fresh cracked black pepper
  • Fresh black or white truffles, shaved

Directions

For the pasta:

  1. Make a well with the flour on a cutting board or countertop and add a large pinch of salt. Stir in the eggs until you get a rough dough. Knead 10 minutes until you have a smooth fairly dry dough. If the dough is sticky, add more flour.
  2. Cover and let rest for 30 minutes.
  3. Roll into sheets to the thinnest setting. Shave truffles over half of the sheets. Lay the others over the top of the truffle sheets. Press down firmly so the pasta sticks together.
  4. Roll through the pasta maker one more time to seal the truffles in the dough.
  5. Roll sheets into cylinders and cut into fettuccini.

To assemble:

  1. Melt the butter in a warm pan.
  2. Cook the pasta in boiling salted water for 2-3 minutes. Move the pasta to the pan with the butter.
  3. Add a ladle or two of the pasta cooking water. Swirl the pasta in the butter and water until it starts to thicken.
  4. Add some fresh cracked black pepper.
  5. Turn off the heat and place into the wheel of Grana. Stir well with a fork or pair of tongs. Adjust with pasta water until you get a creamy sauce.
  6. Serve in a heated bowl and slice the truffles over right before you serve.

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