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Mac & Cheese, Please

02/27/2014 02:53AM, Published by Style, Categories: In Print


Recipe image courtesy of Andrews McMeel Publishing.



From The Founding Farmers Cookbook by Founding Farmers with Nevin Martell

(Andrews McMeel Publishing, 2013, $40)

Macaroni and cheese has been around forever, so we knew we had to step up our game if we wanted to offer it at Founding Farmers. After trying more than 30 combinations, we picked 7 cheeses for 3 distinct elements–saltiness, stringiness, and flavor. Mozzarella and Muenster were chosen for their gooeyness, salt comes courtesy of white cheddar and Asiago, while sharp yellow cheddar, Gruyère, and smoked Gouda bring the flavor factor. If you decide to switch-in alternates, you may have to adjust the amount of salt you use to season the dish. To save prep time, buy shredded cheeses. Don’t worry, we won’t tattle.

  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter

Sauce

  • 3 cups whole milk
  • 2 cups heavy cream
  • 5 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • ½ cup all-purpose flour
  • ¾ cup (3 ounces) shredded smoked Gouda
  • ¼ teaspoon ground white pepper

Macaroni Mixture

  • 1 pound dry elbow macaroni
  • 4 large eggs
  • 1 cup heavy cream
  • 1 cup whole milk
  • 1 tablespoon kosher salt
  • ½ teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 1 teaspoon granulated garlic
  • 2½ cups (10 ounces) shredded sharp yellow cheddar
  • 2½ cups (10 ounces) shredded white cheddar
  • 1 cup (4 ounces) shredded mozzarella
  • 1 cup (4 ounces) shredded Asiago
  • 1½ cups (6 ounces) shredded Gruyère
  • ⅔ cup (2½ ounces) shredded Muenster

Topping

  • ¼ cup unsalted butter
  • 1½ cups panko bread crumbs
  • ¼ teaspoon kosher salt
  • 2½ tablespoons finely sliced fresh chives

Preheat the oven to 325°F. Butter a 3-quart casserole dish (or six 16-ounce individual dishes) with the 2 tablespoons butter and set aside.

Fill a 6-quart saucepan with water and bring to a boil.

Meanwhile, make the sauce: Heat the whole milk and heavy cream in a medium saucepan over medium-low heat. In a separate 2-quart saucepan, melt the butter over medium heat. When the butter begins to bubble, whisk in the flour and cook, whisking constantly, for 1 minute. Slowly pour the hot milk and cream into the flour mixture while whisking. Continue cooking, whisking constantly, until the mixture thickens. Whisk in the Gouda and white pepper. Remove the sauce from the heat and transfer to a large mixing bowl.

When the pasta water is boiling, cook the macaroni for a few minutes short of the package directions. Drain the pasta. Transfer it to the large bowl with the warm sauce and mix together until the pasta is well coated.

In a separate, small bowl, whisk together the eggs, heavy cream, whole milk, salt, black pepper, and granulated garlic. Pour this mixture over the pasta, add the remaining shredded cheeses, and gently fold together until combined. Transfer the pasta mixture to the buttered casserole dish.

Cover the dish with aluminum foil and bake for 20 minutes (12 to 15 minutes if using individual dishes).

While the macaroni bakes, prepare the topping: Melt the butter in a medium sauté pan over medium heat; stir in the panko and salt until the crumbs are coated. Remove from the heat. Remove the macaroni from the oven, discard the foil, and sprinkle the buttered bread crumbs evenly over the top. Return the dish to the oven, uncovered, and bake for an additional 5 to 10 minutes, until the bread crumbs are golden brown.

Remove the dish from the oven, let rest for 5 minutes, then sprinkle the chives over the top and serve. Serves 4 to 6.

From The Founding Farmers Cookbook: 100 Recipes for True Food & Drink from the Restaurant Owned by American Family Farmers by Founding Farmers with Nevin Martell/Andrews McMeel Publishing, LLC 2013


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