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Apparently it was a Roman chef, Alfredo di Lelio, who served this meal to scores of greedy diners and they called it Pasta Alfredo. He cooked and drained fresh pasta (what else those days …?) which he simply tossed in butter over high heat as diners arrived. Once heated, he would add grated cheese fresh herbs and tossed it some more until the cheese was melted. Talking about simple is one thing, but this easy is another!! Some other clever chef, with time on his hands, added the cream and ham and the stuff that we today know as Pasta Alfredo. I like the original version!

Alfredo a’ la Mama

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Recipe by Anna Muller Course: MainCuisine: ItalianDifficulty: Easy




  • 200 g Fresh pasta tagliatelle

  • 80 g Salted butter

  • 80 ml Finely chopped mixed herbs (parsley, basil, garlic chives)

  • 90 g Grated pecorino, parmesan or mature white cheddar cheese

  • Freshly-milled black pepper


  • Cook the pasta in plenty salted water until el dente. Drain but do not rinse.
  • Melt the butter in a large pan. If you like a nutty taste, allow it to turn a little brown but not too brown: it will taste awful. Now add the cooked pasta and toss until coated with the butter.
  • Add the herbs and cheese and toss until the cheese has melted.
  • Serve at once with freshly-milled pepper.

    Serve 4 – 6

Chef’s Hint

  • Well OK. You can add cream and diced grilled bacon or ham or lardons if you want. Cooking is after all, all about your very own taste so do it and enjoy it!

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