FETTUCCINE ALFREDO RECIPE: A First Course Almost Unknown in Italy but Loved by Americans

What a strange phenomenon the one of Fettuccine Alfredo!

They are present in the menus of the vast majority of Italian restaurants in the world, it is one of the most popular Italian dishes abroad, but in Italy they have never reached such a success.

It is an extremely simple first course (at least in appearance!) based on very thin fettuccine, butter and parmesan cheese in generous quantities.

The story goes that it was the year 1908 and Alfredo Di Lelio – the first owner of the historic restaurant Alfredo alla Scrofa – was worried about his young wife who had just given birth to their firstborn (Alfredo jr), however, had no particular appetite and could not recover after pregnancy.

Alfredo then thought of a dish that his wife would have undoubtedly liked, so he cooked her some very thin fettuccine seasoned only with butter and a lot of Parmesan cheese; the lady liked it so much that she ate it almost every day and proposed to her husband to include it in the menu of the family restaurant.

Therefore, a very sweet and romantic origin for Fettuccine Alfredo, which has always been on the menu of the restaurant Alfredo alla Scrofa in Via della Scrofa, today run by Mario Mozzetti and Veronica Salvatori, heirs of the restaurant that Alfredo Di Leo sold to their great-grandfather in 1948.

Mario and Veronica have always wanted to enhance Fettuccine Alfredo not only as a representative dish of the Italian gastronomic tradition but also as a historical heritage of our country.

For this reason, since 2016 was established the NationalFettuccineAlfredoDay and just today in honor of this anniversary in the premises of Alfredo alla Scrofa will be presented a book entirely dedicated to the historic pasta dish.

The book Fettuccine Alfredo – A True Love Story was edited by Clementina Pipola and contains within it the many stories and legends that have been woven around these historic fettuccine.


If you feel like trying to cook them at home, here is the original recipe divided into stages, because in the kitchen what seems easy is often not!








480 g (17 oz) of very thin fettuccine pasta
50 g (3 tbsp + 2 tsp) of butter
220 g (1 cup) of Parmigiano Reggiano Cheese





Fettuccine, prepared strictly fresh, are dipped in boiling water.

The thinner they are, the shorter the cooking time, they should not cook for more than 30 seconds.


Another of the secrets of Fettuccine Alfredo is the draining of the pasta, which is done directly from the pot to the plate.

After the cooking time is over, it will be necessary to prepare an oval dish for serving, strictly hot, in order to allow the butter to melt.

On this plate will be laid the fresh butter at room temperature, so already soft.

The fettuccine, once ready, must be removed from the water using a two-pronged fork. This will allow the pasta not to break and not to stick.

The mantecatura

We now come to the most complex step.

Once the pasta has been placed on the plate with the butter, it must be covered with very fine Parmesan cheese.

Once grated, the Parmesan cheese must be sifted three times so that it becomes a powder.

With a particular gesture, which must be accurate and thoughtful so that the fettuccine become one with butter and parmesan cheese, the fettuccine are stirred on the plate and in sight.

A long fork and a spoon must be used, and with a rotating movement from the bottom to the top, the ingredients will melt into a sweet cream.


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