Embrace garlic on Valentine’s Day

Maybe it’s just me, but there is something sensual about the pungency of garlic.

This Jan. 31

This Jan. 31

Maybe it’s just me, but there is something sensual about the pungency of garlic.

And as long as you follow the No. 1 rule of garlic and romance — both of you eat it or neither of you eat it, never just one — you’re safe adding some serious garlic to your Valentine’s Day dinner. Best yet, it’s such a high-flavour ingredient that it’s easy to make a fast dinner with serious wow! factor. So I decided to make a totally over-the-top garlic dinner, one that is fast and flavourful and in-your-face lush. To make that happen, I decided to use garlic three ways.

I started by making a basic garlic butter by blending softened butter with a generous amount of garlic powder. I know purists poo-poo garlic powder, but I like it for things like this. It blends well in liquids and has a more mellow flavour than fresh. I then used some of that butter to briefly saute slivered fresh garlic.

Then I made my pasta. I liked fettuccine, but any variety works. I tossed the cooked pasta first with the reserved garlic butter, then with the sauteed garlic. I used a splash of chili paste for a touch of heat and to sharpen the other flavours. Then I finished with just a bit of raw garlic, of course.

The result? Intensely delicious. To make it even better I added a bit of grated Parmesan to pull it all together and topped it with some diced tomato for a fresh contrast. And be sure to serve it with garlic bread.

Quick Triple-Garlic Fettuccine

Start to finish: 20 minutes

250 g (8 oz) fettuccine pasta

50 ml (1/4 cup or 1/2 stick) butter, softened

15 ml (1 tbsp) garlic powder

4 large cloves garlic, minced

5 ml (1 tsp) chili paste (hot sauce can be substituted)

125 ml (1/2 cup) grated Parmesan cheese, divided

2 plum tomatoes, seeded and diced

Bring a large saucepan of well-salted (about 15 ml/1 tbsp kosher salt) water to a boil. Add pasta and cook according to package directions. Reserve 50 ml (1/4 cup) of the pasta cooking water, then drain pasta, return it to the saucepan and set aside.

While pasta cooks, in a small bowl, mix together butter and garlic powder.

In a large skillet over medium heat, melt half of the garlic butter. When butter is just sizzling, add half of the minced fresh garlic. Saute for 30 seconds or until it just barely begins to brown. Remove from heat and set aside.

Add remaining garlic powder-butter blend, sauteed garlic and any butter in the skillet, and the chili paste to pasta and toss until butter is melted. Add all but 30 ml (2 tbsp) of the Parmesan and toss until melted and smooth. While tossing, add about 30 ml (2 tbsp) if the reserved pasta cooking water and toss until smooth. Divide pasta between 2 serving plates, then top each with diced tomatoes and reserved Parmesan.

Makes 2 servings.

Nutrition information per serving (values are rounded to the nearest whole number): 756 calories; 291 calories from fat (38 per cent of total calories); 33 g fat (19 g saturated; 1 g trans fats); 81 mg cholesterol; 89 g carbohydrate; 29 g protein; 4 g fibre; 513 mg sodium.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

House sales remain hot in central Alberta with first-quarter sales nearly double last year’s numbers. Photo by PAUL COWLEY/Advocate staff
Central Alberta real estate market hot in 2021

Residential sales nearly double 2020 in first quarter

Red Deer Mayor Tara Veer gave an update on Olymel's COVID-19 situation on Wednesday. (File photo by Advocate staff).
Veer addresses rising COVID-19 cases in Red Deer

Red Deer has added nearly 200 cases of active COVID-19 cases in past week

Alberta’s chief medical officer of health Dr. Deena Hinshaw and Premier Jason Kenney say the province would look at adding additional COVID-19 measures in the coming weeks if the virus continues to spread. (Photo by Government of Alberta)
Walk-in COVID-19 vaccination clinic to open in Red Deer

Alberta adds 1,345 new cases of the virus

Innisfail RCMP are investigating a single-vehicle crash that happened west of Bowden on March 21, 2021. (File photo by Advocate staff)
RCMP investigate culturally insensitive graffiti at Sylvan Lake school

Sylvan Lake RCMP is investigating a vandalism incident. On April 17 around… Continue reading

A vial of the Medicago vaccine sits on a surface. CARe Clinic, located in Red Deer, has been selected to participate in the third phase of vaccine study. (Photo courtesy www.medicago.com)
Red Deer clinical research centre participating in plant-based COVID-19 vaccine trial

A Red Deer research centre has been selected to participate in the… Continue reading

FILE - In this Feb. 18, 2021 file photo State representatives gather at the Capitol, in Phoenix. Two years after Arizona lawmakers repealed a law barring any instruction on HIV or AIDS that that "promotes a homosexual lifestyle," they are close to enacting a broad remake of the state's sex education laws with a particular focus on LGBTQ issues. (AP Photo/Matt York,File)
Arizona governor vetoes strict sex education legislation

Arizona governor vetoes strict sex education legislation

People cheer after a guilty verdict was announced at the trial of former Minneapolis police Officer Derek Chauvin for the 2020 death of George Floyd, Tuesday, April 20, 2021, in Minneapolis, Minn. Former Minneapolis police Officer Derek Chauvin has been convicted of murder and manslaughter in the death of Floyd. (AP Photo/Morry Gash)
Tears and relief sweep intersection where George Floyd died

Tears and relief sweep intersection where George Floyd died

This photo provided by the San Luis Obispo County Sheriff's Office shows Ruben Flores, 80, who was arrested in connection to the murder of college student Kristin Smart at his Arroyo Grande home on Tuesday, April 12, 2021. San Luis Obispo County Sheriff Ian Parkinson said the arrest warrants for Ruben Flores and his son Paul Flores were issued after a search of the elder Flores' home last month using ground-penetrating radar and cadaver dogs. He said evidence was found linked to the killing of Smart but they had not yet located her body. (San Luis Obispo County Sheriff's Office via AP)
Document: Kristin Smart once buried in suspect’s backyard

Document: Kristin Smart once buried in suspect’s backyard

In this image from video, defense attorney Eric Nelson, left, and defendant, former Minneapolis police officer Derek Chauvin listen to Hennepin County Judge Peter Cahill read instructions to the jury before closing arguments, Monday, April 19, 2021, in the trial of Chauvin at the Hennepin County Courthouse in Minneapolis. Chauvin is charged in the May 25, 2020 death of George Floyd. (Court TV via AP, Pool)
Chauvin guilty of murder and manslaughter in Floyd’s death

Chauvin guilty of murder and manslaughter in Floyd’s death

This undated image provided by Matthew Pottage shows drought-tolerant succulents in a window box in London. (Matthew Pottage via AP)
Going beyond the traditional window-box garden

Going beyond the traditional window-box garden

Members of the Canadian Armed Forces march during the Calgary Stampede parade in Calgary, Friday, July 8, 2016. Female service members and veterans are blasting the way Canada's military police investigate allegations of sexual assault and harassment in the ranks.THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jeff McIntosh
Female service members blast military police over sexual misconduct investigations

Female service members blast military police over sexual misconduct investigations

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau is joined virtually by Minister of Finance Chrystia Freeland as they talk online to a group of front-line pharmacists from across the country to discuss the ongoing vaccination efforts in the fight against COVID‑19, from the Prime Ministers office on Parliament Hill in Ottawa on Tuesday, April 20, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Sean Kilpatrick
Freeland says Liberals open to provincial child care demands, draws line around fees

Freeland says Liberals open to provincial child care demands, draws line around fees

Pharmacist Barbara Violo arranges empty vials of the Oxford-AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine that she has provided to customers at the Junction Chemist, an independent pharmacy in Toronto, Monday, April 19, 2021. Younger Canadians in several provinces are now able to get the AstraZeneca vaccine. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Nathan Denette
Trudeau, Freeland seeking AstraZeneca shots as they become age-eligible with others

Trudeau, Freeland seeking AstraZeneca shots as they become age-eligible with others

Most Read