Monday, August 24, 2009

Italian Mac and Cheese

We love cheese in our house. Even the dog is a cheese-whore. He'll do anything for a piece of cheese. If he has a receipt in his mouth, there's no way you can get it from him without bribing him with cheese.

Even though I've found the perfect mac and cheese, it can't hurt to try new variations of it. I've had my eye on this recipe from Ezra Pound Cake for a while now and finally decided to make it. Man, oh man, it's yummy. It's nice and light and really great for the summer. The next day I went out of town and kept thinking about having the leftovers. Much to my sadness, Brian had finished off all of the leftovers while I was gone.

Oh well, guess I'll have to make it again. :)

Baked Shells with Fontina and Parmesan Bread Crumbs
From Jack Bishop’s "The Complete Italian Vegetarian Cookbook"

Serves 4 to 6

1 pound small shells
5 tablespoons unsalted butter
1 cup heavy cream
8 ounces (about 2 cups) Italian Fontina cheese
Pinch of freshly grated nutmeg
1/3 cup plain bread crumbs
1/4 cup freshly grated Parmigiano-Reggiano

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Prepare shells according to package directions, but cook only until they are 1 to 2 minutes shy of al dente. Then drain.

Meanwhile, dice 4 tablespoons of the butter and place in a large bowl. Warm the cream in the microwave, about 1 minute. Cover to keep the cream warm. Shred the Fontina.

Stir the shells into the bowl with the butter. Toss to coat well. Stir in the warm cream and Fontina, and stir until the cheese starts to melt. Season with salt to taste and the nutmeg.

Pour the mixture into a greased 13-by-9 ceramic or glass baking dish. Combine the bread crumbs and Parmigiano-Reggiano, and sprinkle over the pasta. Dice the remaining tablespoon butter, and dot the crumb topping with small pieces of butter.

Bake until the sauce is bubbling and the topping turns golden brown, about 20 minutes. Serve immediately.

1 comment:

Meredith said...

Holy cow! I WILL be making this!! Looks amazing!

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