Monday, April 23, 2012

Truffled Mac and Cheese

I have been making homemade mac and cheese for 30+ years and every once in a while it's fun to try a grown-up version, especially one that has an ingredient that I have been wanting to try; white truffle oil. Even though lots chefs on televised cooking competitions seem to dislike it, I have been curious about it. I found this recipe in the Jan/Feb. 2012 issue of Cooking Light and knew this would be my first venture with this ingredient. This recipe used 12 ounces of macaroni serving 6 people and had just 1 1/2 teaspoons of white truffle oil which gave it just a hint of something unique. Gerry and I both enjoyed this take on mac and cheese, although I will cut down the recipe to make it more reasonable for 2 people. I served Oven Roasted Broccoli as our side dish.

Truffled Mac and Cheese (Serves 6)

2 1/4 cups 1% low-fat milk, divided
2 cups sliced onion (about 1 medium)
1 bay leaf
12 ounces uncooked elbow macaroni
2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
3/4 teaspoon kosher salt
3/4 cup (3 ounces) shredded fontina cheese
1/2 cup (2 ounces) shredded Comte or Gruyere cheese
1 1/2 teaspoons white truffle oil
2 ounces French bread baguette, torn
2 tablespoons grated fresh Parmesan cheese
2 garlic cloves, crushed
1 tablespoon olive oil

Heat 1 3/4 cups milk, onion, and bay leaf in a large saucepan to 180 degrees or until tiny bubbles form around edges (do not boil). Cover and remove from heat; let stand 15 minutes.

Cook pasta according to package directions; drain.

Strain milk mixture through a colander over a bowl; discard solids. Return milk to saucepan over medium heat. Combine remaining 1/2 cup milk and flour in a small bowl, stirring with a whisk until well blended. Gradually stir flour mixture and salt into warm milk, stirring constantly with a whisk. Bring mixture to a boil, stirring frequently; cook 1 minute, stirring constantly. Remove from heat; let stand 6 minutes or until mixture cools to 155 degrees. Gradually add fontina and Comte cheeses, stirring until cheeses melt. Stir in pasta and truffle oil. Spoon mixture into a 2-quart broiler-safe glass or ceramic baking dish.

Preheat broiler.

Place bread, Parmesan cheese, and garlic in a food processor; process until coarse crumbs form. Drizzle with olive oil; pulse until fine crumbs form. Sprinkle breadcrumb mixture over pasta. Place dish on middle rack in oven; broil 2 minutes or until golden brown.

Adapted from Cooking Light Jan/Feb 2012

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