Macaroni and Four Cheese Gratin
courtesy of: Le Creuset's Mini-Cocotte: 25 sweet and savory recipes
18 oz winter durum wheat macaroni
1 oz (1/4 stick) sweet butter
1/2 cup heavy cream
2 oz Gorgonzola
2 oz fontina
2 oz marscarpone
2 oz parmigiano reggiano
2 oz chopped walnuts
salt and freshly ground pepper
Preheat the oven to 430 F. Lightly butter 4 mini cocottes
Plunge the macaroni a good minute in boiling salted water. They should not be cooked through. Pass the pasta under cold running water to stop them cooking. Add several drops of canola or simple vegetable oil to keep it from sticking together.
Melt the butter in a small pan over a low flame. Add the cream, the gorgonzola, the fontina, the marscarpone, and the parmigiano reggiano (reserving 4 tablespoons for the top). Stir the cheese until all are well melted. Add salt and freshly ground pepper to taste. Add the chopped walnuts.
Add the cooked pasta to the sauce and divide into 4 mini- cocottes. Sprinkle the rest of the parmigiano reggiano over each cocotte. Bake for 10 to 15 minutes or until the tops are golden brown and crusty looking. On taking them out of the oven, let them rest for 5 minutes before serving.
So this recipe is totally yummy! Like I said earlier it is a very grown up mac and cheese. I actually felt like I was eating more of a pasta dish...not mac and cheese. Which is a nice change. The meal is a little on the spendy side coming in at around $20.oo. I go to Trader Joes for most of my cheese (other than basics). Any suggestions for a cheap place to get cheese? But this meal is worth every penny. And might I add, how cute are the little cocottes??? They are adorable to me. I am happy I got them. I was a little worried about how practical they would be. Honestly they are not practical at all, but they will be a fun to have. Ok, back the the meal. I forgot to get walnuts at the store so I didn't add them in. It still tasted great. If you don't have anything that is like the cocottes you could put it in a baking dish and it will turn out just fine. I had alot extra so I put some in a small baking dish and it was great.
Also have you ever had marscarpone cheese before? If not go buy some now and try it!! It is amazing. I had only had it in canolles before this. I ate a spoonful right out of the container. It was heaven. All sweet and creamy. Almost like a butter cream frosting.
Make this mac and cheese. You will not be disappointed. It will be a tough act to follow in the weeks ahead.