I know I've mentioned in this blog before that I think there are certain things everyone should know how to make, regardless of his or her own cooking skills. A basic cream sauce is one of those things. You can use it for so many things - Alfredo sauce, mac & cheese, a cheesy sauce for scalloped potatoes, or you can even eat it plain. One of my favorite ways to use a basic cream sauce is to make it into a roasted garlic cream sauce. Which is nice, because I also happen to love roasting garlic. You can turn any cream sauce into a roasted garlic cream sauce, but I recommend using the recipe below. So let's do it, alright?
Roasted Garlic Cream Sauce
Prep & Cook Time - about an hour
1 head garlic, roasted (instructions to follow)
1 cup cream or half & half
2 TBSP milk
1-3 TBSP butter
1 clove garlic, minced
1/8 tsp pepper
1/2 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese
Red pepper flakes, optional
Pasta (I like Fetuccini)
Preheat oven to 450 degrees F (I recommend using a toaster oven. It's super easy and uses a lot less energy than a regular oven).
Cut the garlic head in half (you should have a top and bottom half, not a left and right side). Place each half on a sheet of tin foil. Drizzle with olive oil and sprinkle with salt & pepper. Bake for about 25 minutes. Remove from oven, let sit about 5 minutes, and then open the tin foil to let the garlic cool.
Meanwhile, cook the pasta to al dente. Drain & set aside.
In a medium skillet, combine cream, milk, butter, minced garlic, and salt & pepper. Thicken by whisking in about 2 tsp flour, if necessary. Bring to just boiling. Reduce heat to low. Add cheese and whisk till smooth. If sauce is too thin, add some stock (chicken or veggie) or some more milk.
Now, squeeze the garlic out of the paper-y skin. The bottom half should take a bit more work than the top. They should just sort of fall out of the top with just a little squeeze from the top. You might have to dig a little on the bottom. Mash with a metal potato masher or the back of a fork. Add to the cream sauce and whisk together. Cook for about 2 minutes, stirring occasionally. Sprinkle with red pepper flakes.
Serve over pasta. Sprinkle with more red pepper flakes, to taste.