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Gourmet Mac & Cheese

OK, I'm on a quest to make a gourmet mac and cheese. This is going to be a part of a dinner where I am doing totally upscale food that wouldn't ever be considered upscale. Things like fried okra, mac & cheese, ribs. Sometimes it's fun to mess with my friends and give them haute comfort food. So I'm looking for a totally wacky, fun, gourmet mac & cheese. Does it have truffle oil in it? Great. Does it use a random camembert that I need to order from monks who only check their e-mails on the third tuesday of the month? Awesome. As long as I can get my hands on the ingredients and it isn't made like the Fleur de Lys 5k hamburger, I'm all in.

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  1. This recipe is my favourite "adult" mac and cheese. Just made it for new year's eve dinner (along with meatloaf and roasted cauliflower).

    http://www.epicurious.com/recipes/rec...

    The bleu cheese adds a great tang to the dish. I add a bit of mustard powder and a pinch of cayenne to it. And thanks to the chowhounds here who told me to take the bechamel off heat before stirring in the cheese -- it made for a perfectly smooth sauce.

    3 Replies
    1. re: TorontoJo

      when you say a bit of mustard powder, a pinch? a teaspoon? a tablespoon? just getting an idea. I love cayenne- it's my go to spice.

      I think I'd try this with an aged sharp cheddar. This is an inexpensive enough recipe that I could do a lot of trial and error with it.

      Also, when you say take the bechamel off heat to stir in the cheese- do you keep it off heat and let the heat remaining melt the cheese or do you return it to a low burner?

      1. re: jpschust

        Yes, I use an aged sharp cheddar as well. I'm not a huge fan of bleu cheese, but I do like it in this very much. If I want something milder, I'll use a cambozola instead of bleu.

        I use maybe a 1/2 teaspoon of mustard powder. And yes, I keep the bechamel off heat and let the remaining heat melt the cheese. This was a great rec from another chowhound and it gave me a much smoother end product. I also let the bechamel simmer for longer than the recipe calls for (maybe 10 mins).

        Have fun with your dinner party!

        1. re: TorontoJo

          hey thanks so much. I'll give some feedback as to how I think this recipe was. I intend on trying a bunch of recipes :)

    2. I wouldn't consider this recipe "wacky", but it is very good and definitely a gourmet version of mac n' cheese: http://www.epicurious.com/recipes/rec... I went through a stage a few months ago, along with several other chowhounds, of wanting mac n' cheese all the time and I made lots of different recipes; this one was my favorite!

      1. I had a fantastic lobster mac and cheese at the Canoe Restaurant in Center Harbor, NH. It was both as upscale and comforting as anything I have ever eaten. I've never tried to make it but I'm sure it can't be that difficult to figure out.

        1. Although I don't know the recipe ... many years ago we ate at Le Bernadin in NYC and they had Mac and Cheese on the menu for many $$$. As it was Le Bernadin, it was on the menu and it was expensive - how bad could it be? My husband decided to order it w/out asking any questions. WOW .. it was made with lobster and truffles and was absolutely amazing.

          Here are a few links I've found from googling "Lobster Mac and Cheese" some may be the same recipe and I can't recommend for any of them but worth a look):

          http://www.paradounyc.com/lobster.htm

          http://donnafales.com/recipes/2005/05...

          http://www.tillamookcheese.com/Recipe...

          http://www.hancockgourmetlobster.com/...

          1. Zingerman's Roadhouse in Ann Arbor has several different mac and cheese recipes.

            They actually have an explainer as to why it runs $15 a pop.

            Hope these can provide inspiration.
            http://www.zingermansroadhouse.com/co...

            eb