making food from anywhere, with anything

ending february on a decadent note.


Hello everyone.

Yesterday’s chili was a big disappointment.  Although it had tons of flavor and heat, I wasn’t into it.  I guess I need to find a more traditional recipe.

Today, I decided to try out a macaroni and cheese recipe that did not involve baking, as I do not have a casserole dish.  I experimented with a new ingredient (seems to be the current theme): creme fraiche.  For those who have either never heard of creme fraiche, or just have no idea what it is in general, it’s akin to sour cream.  Creme fraiche is thick, and has a high content of butterfat.  It is not sour, and is often used in sauces because it doesn’t curdle when cooked.  It’s really luscious and creamy, but it also has a hint of buttery flavor.  It’s good. Actually, very good I’m thinking.

classed-up mac and cheese

Although mac and cheese typically involves cheddar, I decided not to go that route.  I used what I had on hand, which was brie and manchego.  They made a very nice pair.  As you can see, I had a weird mix of pasta, as well.  I’ve been trying to get rid of all the pasta I have.

Macaroni and Cheese

about 4 cups of pasta

approximately 1/4 cup of creme fraiche

1/2 cup of manchego cheese, shredded

1/2 cup brie, chopped into small pieces (can’t really shred brie)

Method:

1. Boil lightly salted water in a medium saucepan.  Add the pasta and cook until al dente.

2. In a smaller saucepan, boil a little water.  Create a double boiler: place a bowl over the pan just above the water level (you do NOT want the water touching the bowl).  Place the creme fraiche into here and melt.  Then, slowly add the rest of the cheese while stirring.  Do this until everything is melted and creamy.  If the sauce isn’t creamy enough for you, then add a little more creme fraiche.

3. Strain the pasta and put it back into the saucepan.  Coat the pasta with the sauce, and serve.  Garnish with some parsley, green onions, or even a few cracks of black pepper.

I thought this mac and cheese was really good.  It wasn’t too cheesey, but it was still decadent.  The cheeses I used were fairly mild, so they went very nicely with the flavor of the creme fraiche.  It all tasted rather buttery and nutty, yet light and creamy because of the brie.  I thought a nice squeeze of some lemon would have worked very well with this.

Tomorrow, a bit of Persian cuisine.  The last time I promised Persian food, I did not pull through.  This time, however, it’s going to happen (the chicken is marinading as I write).  Jujeh kebab with my first ever attempt at potato tahdig.  It will be good.

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