pappardelle with potato & brown butter sauce

pappardelle with brown butter sauceI recently purchased Pasta Grannies; it’s been a long time since I bought a cookbook.  I know, gasp!  But to be honest, I have a lovely curated collection of cookbooks.  Each has a special meaning for me.  So when I saw this book, it spoke to me and to the Italian grandmothers (nonne) who divulged their cooking secrets.  Oh, and by the way, the youngest in this book is 79! Turning each page, I could feel what each nonna was sharing with me; their love of putting food on the table.  My pappardelle recipe is inspired by Laura’s pizzoccheri.  I am not a fan of buckwheat flour and the day I made this, I could not find savoy cabbage for her pasta dish.  However, I was not deterred as a good cook knows what substitutes will work.  I chose not to make my pappardelle (feeling lazy) and instead, purchased a box of Cipriani pasta because the box was so pretty. 🙂

feeds 4

250g fresh or store-bought pappardelle
1 large potato, peeled and cut into 3cm (1 1/2 inch) dice
150g savoy cabbage, shredded (use spinach in place of cabbage)
100g butter
2 cloves of garlic, peeled and smashed
200g Valtellina cheese, shaved (can also use Gruyère, Emmental, Beaufort, Edam, or Gouda)
100g Parmigiano reggiano cheese, grated

brown butter sauce

Melt butter in a frying pan and sauté the garlic until golden brown but not burnt. Remove from heat and set aside.


Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Add the potato and cook for a couple of minutes before adding the cabbage. After 5 minutes, add pasta to the same pot and cook everything for 6 minutes or when the pasta is al dente. Drain the pasta and potato mixture. In a large serving vessel (with high sides), add a layer of the pasta and potato-cabbage mixture followed by a scattering of both cheeses (lay the Valtelina first and scatter Parmigiano). Repeat the layers finishing with the cheese. Warm up the garlic butter and pour over the top. Do not mix. Cover with a lid or clean towel. Let sit for a couple of minutes before serving.

the culinary chase’s note:

Keep the pasta water in the pot and remove pasta and cabbage mixture using a hand strainer. Place the serving vessel over the hot pasta water and cover with a clean tea towel. This will help keep the dish warm and melt the cheese. The taste factor is off the charts. Enjoy!