bring edible greens into the home because the smells are fantastic and you feel a bit healthier snipping leaves from your garden pots to your plate…
The struggle of gardening your own herbs can be real. It’s exciting to bring edible greens into the home because the smells are fantastic and you feel a bit healthier snipping leaves from your garden pots to your plate.
One of the few plants to survive past a year in my house is a charming rosemary bush that bursts with fragrant green leaves every fall.
Rosemary is an underrated fall flavor shadowed by the pumpkin diva, but is heavily used to flavor our soups and stews. It originated along the coasts of the Mediterranean and is quite tolerant to droughts, heat, and dry soil (and apparently the uncertain climate of my house).
Rosemary is an underrated fall flavor shadowed by the pumpkin diva, but is heavily used to flavor our soups and stews….
So, before we forget about Thanksgiving after Halloween, I present to you this Rosemary & Gruyere Macaroni and Cheese, courtesy of my hardy rosemary pot.
Occasionally, I’m lucky to get raw milk cheddar locally, so I used its funkier flavor in this dish alongside authentic Gruyere and Parmesan-Reggiano that I grated at home. No raw milk? No worries! Just use sharp or extra sharp cheddar instead. Or, if you’re feeling fancy, any variety of artisan cheddar.
Buying imported cheeses can be expensive, so I highly recommend shopping for small wedges of these cheeses to get just the amount you need for this dish; they’re less expensive and won’t go to waste. I used European imported Gruyere and Parmesan because they’re pure, real cheeses made with milk, salt, and rennet; anything else, and it’s not Gruyere and Parmesan.
real cheeses made with milk, salt, and rennet; anything else, and it’s not gruyere and parmesan…
Use a grater or zester to shave them since they’re hard cheeses. If Gruyere and Parmesan-Reggiano are unavailable to you, you can certainly use their commodity counterparts, but keep in mind that the flavor won’t be the same; you’ll miss out on the complex nut and fruit notes acquired during the aging process.
The rosemary flavor is very satisfying, and it perfumes the kitchen as it bakes. Rosemary goes very well with crunchy textures, hence the added panko that crisps at the first bite.
The rosemary flavor is very satisfying, and it perfumes the kitchen as it bakes….
Double the cheese roux if you like your macaroni extra cheesy. This dish goes well with chicken stew and pot roasts. Make your Sunday evening extra special!
Rosemary & Gruyère Mac & Cheese
- 1 TBSP (15g) Unsalted Butter
- 1 TBSP (15g) All-Purpose Flour
- 1 Cup (225ml) Whole Milk, or ½ (115g) Cup Milk and ½ (115g) Cup Heavy Cream
- 2 ½ Cups (300g) Raw Milk Cheddar or Extra Sharp Cheddar cubed, plus extra for topping.
- 1 LBS (454g) Elbow Pasta
- ¼ Cup (50g) Gruyere Cheese, grated
- 2 TBSP (20g) Parmesan, grated
- 2 TBSP (30g) Panko Bread Crumbs
- 2 Bunches Fresh Rosemary, or more to taste, roughly chopped
Boil the Pasta
Preheat the oven to 350°F (175°C).
In a large pot of salted water, boil the elbows according to the directions on the package.
Once cooked, strain the elbows and toss them around in a TBSP of butter or olive oil to keep them from sticking to each other. Set them to the side in a warm place.
Make a Roux
While the pasta cooks, in a medium sauce pan cook the butter and flour on low to medium heat, stirring until the flour dissolves. Once it does, add the milk and/or cream and gently mix.
Let the mixture get bubbly and thick, stirring occasionally, but do not let it burn.
Turn the heat to low and stir in the cheddar. Mix until the cheese has completely melted, but do not burn it.
Take the mixture off the heat and season it with salt and pepper to taste.
In a large mixing bowl, mix the elbows, cheese roux, and 1 bunch of the chopped rosemary together until thoroughly combined.
Bake the Pasta
Pour the elbow mixture into a 9x9 baking dish and even out the surface with a spatula.
Mix together the extra grated cheddar, gruyere cheese, parmesan, the other bunch of chopped rosemary, and bread crumbs. Evenly top the macaroni with the grated cheese mixture, and season with salt and pepper to taste.
Bake the dish covered for 25 to 30 minutes, then bake the dish uncovered for 10 minutes.
Let the macaroni and cheese sit for at least 15 minutes before serving.
• You can double the ingredients for the roux if you like your macaroni to be cheesy.
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