Not Your Mother’s Mac & Cheese

By Chuck Fuller

Chuck Fuller is owner of Metro Specialty Products, a catering company aimed at medium- to high-end clients. He can be reached at charles.fuller@mchsi.com or 279-5922.

It seems we have readers as far north as Stillwater, Minnesota. This menu idea comes to us from chef Tina Massey of Noodles & Company. Rachel Chilson with the public relations firm Lemke Anderson, which handles the Noodles account, was kind enough to share it with us. I have modified it just a touch. Let us know how you like it.

Truffle Macaroni & Cheese

Serves 4 -6

Ingredients:

2 cups heavy cream

1 cup chicken stock

6 ounces shredded cheese (I used a blend of jack and cheddar)

1/4 cup chopped onion

1 teaspoon minced garlic

3 tablespoons butter

1 tablespoon pure olive oil

1 1/2 tablespoons all-purpose flour

1/2 teaspoon white or black truffle oil (get it at AllSpice in the East Village)

Salt and pepper to taste

1 pound medium shell pasta, cooked and drained according to box directions

16 ounces baby Portabella mushrooms, caps and stems rinsed and rough chopped

6 ounces grated Parmesan cheese

1 cup Panko bread crumbs

 

Preparation:

In a heavy 3-quart saucepan, sauté onions, mushrooms and garlic in 2 tablespoons butter

and 1 tablespoon olive oil until soft and lightly browned.

Add the flour and cook, stirring for about 5 minutes.

Add the cream and chicken stock, simmer on a low heat until mixture thickens.

Take the pot off the heat, add the cheese and truffle oil and whisk until smooth. Season to taste.

Blend the grated cheese, the Panko crumbs and the remaining 1 tablespoon butter.

Mix cream with shell pasta.

Transfer to a baking dish and top with cheese and breadcrumb mixture. If your mixture is too dry you may add a bit of chicken stock.

Bake at 375 degrees, just until the topping browns, about 12 minutes or so.

Serve with a tossed salad of fennel, cucumber, grape tomatoes and Romine.

 

Love nice people, cook them tasty food!

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