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Glass of WinePairing to compliment each other

Iron Horse 2006 Iron Horse Sonoma County Brut and Mac'n Cheese with Bacon

Presented by: Kent and Max Girard

Crackaroni ll

So… Here I continue to riff on addictively (hence the name… CRAckeroni…addictive, get it?) tasty mac n’ cheese. The original Crackeroni is made in one big casserole dish in a layered fashion, béchamel, pasta, cheese, béchamel, pasta , cheese, etc. This time I make it in the more traditional manner of making a cheesy sauce and pouring it over the noodles to incorporate it and then baking it. So here goes…

For eight as a small plate serving:

12 oz. rotelli pico (mini rotelli)
6 oz. Velveeta
5 oz. Gruyere
5 oz. Fiscalini San Joaquin Gold Cheddar
appx 3.5 cups béchamel sauce
5 slices cooked artesian bacon

For the béchamel…
Make a roux using unsalted butter and flour. Get it nice and smokey,
about the color of peanut butter. Slowly add milk, stirring pretty much constantly. Add any seasoning you wish.. I add a little cayenne, salt, a few generous pinches of herb de province, some white pepper…you get the idea. You want to end up with a tasty but not over-powering sauce. Now add the cheeses. I cut up the Velveeta in small chunks, and add and stir in till melted and incorporated. Grate up the other two and add but reserve enough of the Fiscalini to top the final dishes before putting under the broiler.

Cook the pasta accordingly and set aside.
Set up 8 small ramekins and dress with some olive oil
Mix the pasta with the sauce
Crumble the bacon

Spoon the pasta/sauce mix into the ramekin half way, sprinkle about a tablespoons worth of the bacon over and fill the rest of the way with more pasta. Sprinkle a fat tablespoons worth of the Fiscalini over the top. Set all of the ramekins on a baking sheet and place under the broiler until the tops have browned up nicely. Done!

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