Let's face it, 2020 has been crazy, and I think most of us thought we would be back to normal by the holidays. That we'd be going from holiday party to holiday party with our biggest concerns being how to fit it all into our schedule (and continue to fit into our pants after all that eating). We'll suffice it to say the holiday season is looking different for everyone this year.
We asked our friends on Instagram a few weeks back about the upcoming holidays, and what pain points they had that we might be able to help with. One theme that quickly emerged was food. Since we aren't going party hopping and experiencing a larger variety of food beyond our go to home meals, people are craving new, seasonal, simple recipes to shake up dinnertime and make meals at home feel special.
Enter one of my all time favorites - gorgonzola pasta. This is comfort food, personified. It was the first fancy meal that I learned to make back when Steven and I were first married. Truth be told we had no idea what Gorgonzola was (turns out, it's just fancy blue cheese), but all I knew was that it looked like fettuccine alfredo, and alfredo was having its moment back in 2005.
This meal looks and feels luxurious and fancy, but it is SO easy to make. And it's a crowd pleaser. My kids, like all kids, can be really picky eaters, but even the 2 year old inhales this. Last time I made it he ate THREE BOWLS. He patiently sat just out of sight of the camera the entire time we took pictures waiting for his bowl. When they are teenagers I'm going to need to quadruple this recipe.
I make this dish all year long and change up the herbs seasonally, but it is definitely best in the fall with fresh sage. I love how it takes an herb that we are all about around Thanksgiving, but using it in a way that doesn't remotely feel like Thanksgiving.
I love serving this with homemade no-knead artisan bread (that recipe is coming soon!) and a gorgonzola cranberry salad (which I pick up in kit form at the grocery store). It's also good in a giant bowl all by itself because PASTA.
I am not lying when I say this is super easy to make. It starts and ends with the sauce. While the pasta cooks, start by melting the butter over medium heat, then adding in the gorgonzola crumbles (hold back a few to sprinkle on at the end), whisking until all the cheese melts into a blue-green cheesy wonderland. At our rental house I FINALLY for the first time in my life have a gas range, which is leaps and bounds better for sauce making.
Once the cheese is melted you just add in the other ingredients that you've whisked together in a measuring cup, whisk them in, and bring to a simmer. It will quickly thicken. Then you can turn down the flame as low as possible, or just turn it off, because the hot pasta will be enough to warm the sauce back through. Add the noodles, use a little pasta water if needed to thin the sauce, and serve. SO EASY.
If you want to be extra fancy, use fresh pasta noodles and this will literally melt in your mouth. It's my go-to meal when we're having people over for dinner because it looks and tastes so impressive, but takes just a few minutes to make.
prep time 5 minutes
cook time 15 minutes
total time 20 minutes
1 lb fettuccine
2 tbsp butter
5 oz gorgonzola crumbles
3/4 c heavy cream
1/4 c dry white wine (chardonnay works great)
1 heaping tsp cornstarch
fresh ground black pepper
1 tbsp fresh sage, chiffonade (cut into thin strips)
FYI - you do NOT need salt in this recipe at all. The cheese is salty enough for the whole dish.
Bring a pot of water to boil. Add fettuccine and cook per package directions.
Meanwhile melt 2 tbsp butter in a large sauté pan over medium heat. Add gorgonzola crumbles, reserving some for garnish, and whisk often to melt cheese and keep it from burning.
Combine cream, white wine, cornstarch, and black pepper in a measuring cup, making sure to whisk out all lumps. Pour into melted cheese mixture and whisk to combine. Bring sauce to a simmer to thicken, then reduce heat to low.
Drain pasta, reserving a bit of pasta water. Add pasta to the sauté pan and toss to coat in sauce. Add a bit of pasta water if needed to thin out the sauce. Toss in sage. Serve immediately.