Sunday, June 03, 2007

macaroni cheese and friendship

c's a proper friend. he listens to my whinging about all things mundane and gives me rather sensible and grown-up advice. we've become friends through, among other things, our shared ability to talk with delirious zeal about food which sometimes culminates in the sudden cessation of speech and a glazed look in our eyes. i sometimes get hungry just listening to him. he's also the sort of mate who shares the good stuff - recommendations, restaurants and recipes. most recently, he brought me through the various production stages of macaroni cheese.

if like me, your memories of macaroni cheese involve the orange powdery affairs gloopey mess produced from a blue kraft box, macaroni cheese hardly features highly on your favourite foods. c's version however, resulted in an entire afternoon of plotting how i could escape the clutches of my slavedrivers to go home to make the dish he so lovingly described.

macaroni cheese according to c:

“cook some 350g worth of large conchiglie shells till just before they are al dente. drain them off but keep about a cup of the cooking water behind. fry some oregano or marjoram in a pan with some butter and when it starts to smell nice add the cooked pasta and some of the reserved cooking water. to this add about 125g of gruyere, 100g of parmesan and 125g of mascarpone (these don't have to be exact or anything). stir all this around in the pan and add more pasta water as necessary to encourage thorough coating, the mascarpone is probably the most important thing to coat all the shells with, which is easier if you use big shells. After all the shells are coated transfer the gooey pasta goodness to an ovenproof dish. Tear up a medium sized (or bigger if you like) ball of buffalo mozzarella and put all the bits over the top of the pasta in the dish. Then sprinkle over some more parmesan, to taste, and if you like grate a little nutmeg on the top. Pop this all in the oven at 200 degrees and cook for about 10 or 12 minutes then stick it under the grill for about 5 minutes. then eat it all, yum yum”

I followed his instructions assiduously down to the eat it all, yum yum bit. the only amendment I made (in my third attempt within the same week – it was this good), was the addition of a couple of grilled proscuitto slices which I crumbled into the pasta, and the use of amori spirals rather than large shells because I just adore their springiness.


Blogger novice said...

Screams "fattening"!!!

7:49 AM  

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