What's missing from this pasta recipe?

It sounds like it should be a decadent pasta dish, but something’s missing. It’s basically flavorless and greasy.

1 pound spaghetti
3 Tbs. butter
1/4 c. olive oil
1 c. minced parsley
1 c. crumbled blue cheese

I tried doctoring it up with fresh ground black pepper, oregano and Parmesan, which helped a little. For one thing, there’s way too much fat for one pound of pasta. The recipe’s from a 20 year old vegetarian cookbook, so that may be the whole problem right there. Can this recipe be saved? :eek: :smiley: If not, do you have any tasty vegetarian recipes for pasta with blue cheese? Preferably with more vegetables?

No garlic?

I don’t know why you’d need butter or oil, with the cheese, much less both of them. That’s what’s causing the greasiness. Plus, there’s no salt? Pasta needs salt. I’ve never really paired blue cheese with pasta- maybe it just doesn’t go well together?

What is good is angel hair pasta, with salt, fresh ground black pepper, parmesan cheese, and maybe a little pasta water to thin it out a bit.

That’s almost carbonara. To make it so would require eliminating the butter and olive oil and adding chopped ham and bacon, then tossing with a beaten egg and some cream. Without the meat, you have a pretty bland dish, I guess. Could you tolerate just a little bit?

You might be better off making a variation of alfredo sauce that has blue cheese.

For vegetables, I’d suggest adding sauteed mushrooms and/or spinach.

They go together very well.My ex made a dish with bleu cheese and angel hair pasta(and Morels!) it was fantastic,although I believe she used cream or something to cut the bleu cheese flavor down a bit

Salt the water you cook the pasta in. Lots of salt. Like the ocean.

Extra virgin olive oil, maybe a Tbs at most drizzled on just before serving.

Second the garlic.
Add oregano.

I’ve never seen bleu cheese on pasta. ETA:I stand corrected.

I don’t know why it’s not working for you. I might skip the olive oil, but that’s about it. Looks fine as-is, except I might add a little cream (maybe 1/2 cup or so) to it. As runner pat mentioned Are you salting your pasta water enough?

Pasta with blue cheese (usually in the form of gorgonzola) is fairly common. You should try the above recipe with some walnuts. Here’s one version to help you out.

ETA: Oh, as for vegetables, asparagus works well in pasta with gorgonzola.

There are pasta recipes that don’t include garlic? Weird. Maybe they just assumed that you’d take it for granted?

I would ditch the olive oil and butter, and add garlic and salt. I think that will be a lot more flavorful and a lot less greasy.

My vote for veg is either asparagus or spinach.

Yep. Lots of 'em. Often, they’ll have onion, instead, but a pasta recipe without garlic is not unusual in the least. Many Italian cooking traditions use one or the other, not both. I personally don’t think a recipe involving blue cheese needs either.

ETA: MsWhatsIt–Good call on the spinach. I agree that would work really well.

Here’s another gorgonzola sauce recipe that may give the OP some ideas. There’s nutmeg and optional sage in this one. Forgot to mention that nutmeg almost always pairs well with creamy sauces.

Cream! :smack: I love gorgonzola cream sauce and it never even occurred to me to add cream.

I agree it needs something bitter - walnuts or asparagus sound good. I’ve been putting nutmeg in everything lately anyway, I should have just added some tonight.

And more salt in the water. I thought the pasta was salty enough, but obviously not.

Yum! I’ll have to try some of these ideas out soon.

Remove butter, add salt, pepper, minced garlic and chopped olives. I’d totally eat it then.

“Almost carbonara” :confused:

Carbonara is pasta tossed with beaten eggs, pancetta or bacon (at least in the US), and parmesan or pecorino. The OP recipe is pasta tossed with butter, olive oil, parsley and blue cheese. Where is the resemblance?

Back to the OP: I agree with the others that say it needs less fat, probably some cream, and salt. Spinach/nuts would be good as well. Garlic, I dunno - blue cheese is a strong flavor, I’m not sure another strong flavor would add a lot.

parsley & cheese – I don’t always use parmesan; many other cheeses work well. You didn’t read the rest of my post where I described the difference?

True, I forgot the parsley. But cheese is not a generic ingredient; blue cheese introduces an entirely different flavor profile, and it’s simply not carbonara anymore.

And yes, I did read the rest of your post. It basically said to remove all the non-Carbonara ingredients and add Carbonara-esque ingredients. I could just as easily say that the OP’s recipe is pretty much lasagna. Just don’t put in the olive oil and parsley, add some tomatoes and meat and some ricotta instead of blue cheese, and layer it.

I’m a purist, I guess. Carbonara is a very specific flavor profile, and though you can play with it somewhat (bacon/pancetta rather than guanciale, for example), substituting blue cheese for Pecorino makes it an entirely different dish because the basic flavors are entirely different.

I’d dump the butter and reduce the olive oil. Also dump the bleu cheese. Add garlic, minced chilis (the skinny green ones you see at your grocery or just red pepper flakes), salt, grated parmesan: the result is spaghetti aglio e olio.

Choose either the butter or the olive oil to stay. You only need enough fat to give it a bit of slipperiness. Add fresh basil leaves (hand-torn is best, but shredded or chopped is okay). Also add fresh-grated Parmesan cheese.

I agree with kaylasdad. I would do one other thing–add a ladle or two of the pasta cooking water. A pro tip that helps sauce cling to pasta, adds a velvety texture (both due to the starach in the water) and smooths things out.