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Herby Macaroni and Three Cheeses

Herby Macaroni and Three Cheeses

With the winter winds howling and the sun lying low in the sky, we've been on a comfort food kick around here. Mac and cheese is one of the all time favorite comfort foods, and I couldn't help noticing that Kevin, over at Seriously Good, made mac and cheese on his first night cooking in his new kitchen, where he's crying the blues because he says it's too small. These are the kind of moments mac and cheese was made for: your new kitchen is too small, your dog ran away, the oil bill's too high and it's way too long until spring.

This version of mac and cheese is a little upscale, with a bunch of herbs and some high-fallutin' cheeses, but it's still just good old mac and cheese at heart: the food you need now, when things seem to be crumbling and falling apart all around you. We had this on a blustery night with a crusty bread, salad and a light, mellow pinot grigio. It made things so much better for an hour or so!

Herby Macaroni and Three Cheeses

Serves 6 - 8.

6 oz Taleggio cheese, shredded
6 oz sharp imported Provolone cheese, shredded
4 oz Parmeggiano Reggiano, shredded
2 T fresh sage, minced
3 T fresh rosemary, minced
4 T fresh parsley, minced
2 T fresh oregano, minced
4 strips thick cut bacon (about 4 oz)
2 C milk
2 T butter
3 T flour
2 tsp dry mustard powder
1 tsp salt
12 oz elbow macaroni (uncooked weight)
hot sauce to taste

Mix the shredded cheeses and add the herbs, tossing to mix. Divide the mixture into two bowls, with approximately 10 ounces of the mixture in one bowl and the remainder in the other. 

Sauté the bacon on medium heat, turning occasionally, until starting to crisp at the edges. Drain on paper towel and chop.

Warm the milk in a small saucepan. Pour all but 2 tablespoons of the bacon fat from the sauté pan. Add the butter to the sauté pan and melt over medium-high heat. When the foaming subsides, scatter in the flour and cook, stirring constantly, about 3 minutes. Pour in the milk and cook, stirring, until the sauce is smooth and thick. Mix in the 10 ounces of cheese, one handful at a time, stirring t0 melt the cheese before adding the next handful. Cook and stir until smooth. Add the salt and dry mustard and stir to mix. Add hot sauce to taste and correct seasoning.

Cook the macaroni just beyond al dente and drain. Add the chopped bacon to the cheese sauce and mix the sauce with the macaroni. Pour into a buttered casserole or baking dish. Scatter the remaining cheese/herb mixture over the macaroni and bake in a preheated 425º oven about 20 minutes. Finish the dish about 3" from the broiler for 3 - 5 minutes, until the top is browned and crispy. Allow to rest 5 minutes before serving.


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that looks and sounds (and no doubt tastes) incredible.

This looks amazing. Macaroni and cheese is probably my favorite comfort food. (I use Dreamfields low carb pasta, which honestly tastes just like "real" pasta.) Another recipe to save!

Cosmic food waves again. There I was needing comfort food tonight and was thinking of mac and cheese. Ended up with a mushroom pasta dish in the end. Am so drooling over this dish now. Wheeze. Drool. Wheeze.

Macoroni cheese must be the ultimate comfort food. I will definately be trying your recipe it looks fab


That looks incredible!

Stephen, as always your photo is fabulous and makes the dish so appetizing. Can't wait to try it out.

I too made some grown up mac & cheese and mentioned you on the post.

Hey - this is "Big Boy" mac and cheese. Coming to my house this weekend! Thanks as always!

This went over like gangbusters! Terrific, terrific, terrific!

I left an award for you on my blog along with a link. Hope it will bring some new faces to your blog. Cheers!

I am a new subscriber. Your recipes look fantastic. But I cannot figure out how to print them out without 6 pages of comments and when I use my print preview button the right side of the recipe is cut off.
Is there a print recipe feature?

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