Thursday, April 19, 2012

Mac N' Cheese With Braised Leeks

Mac and Cheese with braised leeks and asiagoWe've got a rainy weekend ahead of us and this would make the perfect comfort food! For those of you who are trying to introduce new vegetables to your kids, this would be a great opportunity! They won't ask about the green stuff in there, they'll be too busy wolfing it down!
Serves: 8

For the leeks
3 tablespoons olive oil
4 leeks – 4” of tops and roots trimmed (1 1/2 lbs), cut in half lengthwise, thoroughly washed and cut in 1/4” slices
4 large garlic cloves – skinned and finely chopped
1/4 teaspoon dried red pepper flakes
1/2 teaspoon sea salt
freshly ground black pepper to taste
3/4 cup white wine

For the béchamel
6 tablespoons unsalted butter
6 tablespoons unbleached white flour
6 cups milk – warmed
1 cup heavy cream
freshly ground nutmeg to taste
1/2 teaspoon sea salt
freshly ground black pepper to taste
8 oz (225g) Wisconsin Asiago – coarsely grated (2 cups)

For the bread crumbs
1/3 cup bread crumbs
1/2 cup finely grated Wisconsin Parmesan
1 tablespoon olive oil
For the pasta
1 lb pennette lisce or macaroni
1 tablespoon sea salt (for the pasta water)
1 medium (15″ x 10″) ceramic or glass baking dish – buttered
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