Monday, November 16, 2009

Fontina Shells and Cheese

This is easily one of the easiest and tastiest recipes for macaroni and cheese ever. Amped up with Fontina and Parmesan Cheese, this is crazy good. I froze half, and I'm waiting for the perfect opportunity to break out the second pan....sometime soon, I'm thinking.

With Thanksgiving just around the corner, this would be a great twist on the classic versions.

After the Tomato-Mozarella Tart with Basil-Garlic Crust, I am dying to buy this cookbook. Thank you, Rebecca, for sharing such a rich and tasty recipe!

Baked Shells with Fontina and Parmesan Bread Crumbs adapted from Ezra Pound Cake, originally from The Complete Italian Vegetarian Cookbook
  • 1 pound small shells
  • 8 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 1/2 cup heavy cream
  • 1/2 cup buttermilk
  • 8 ounces (about 2 cups) Italian Fontina cheese
  • Salt
  • Pinch of freshly grated nutmeg
  • 1/3 cup plain bread crumbs
  • 1/4 cup freshly grated Parmigiano-Reggiano
  • 2 Tablespoons basil, chiffonade
Cook the shells according to package directions, boiling until they are 1-2 minutes short of al dente. Drain and set aside.

Preheat the oven to 350.

Meanwhile, shred the fontina, and cut 5 tablespoons of the butter into Tablespoon portions. Cut the remaining butter into 1/2 inch cubes. Warm the cream and buttermilk in the microwave, then set aside and cover to keep warm.

Stir the shells with the butter in a large bowl. Pour in the cream, and fold in the fontina until it starts to melt. Season to taste with salt, and add the nutmeg as well.

Spread into a greased 9 x 13 inch baking dish. Top with breadcrumbs and Parmesan, then sprinkle the reserved butter over the top.

Bake for 20 minutes, or until the top is slightly browned and the cheese is bubbling. Sprinkle basil over the top, and serve hot.


Elizabeth said...

Oh My! Fontina is my favorite! This looks to die for!!!!!

Annie said...

I'm SO glad you posted about this! I had this recipe bookmarked, and almost deleted it because I just wasn't sure how good it would be. Hearing your rave makes me definitely want to try it. Yay!

Rebecca said...

I made this last night and it was first time using fontina cheese. My family gulped it down so fast, we didn't even have any leftovers! The nutmeg was a nice touch. Thanks for the recipe.

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