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Does anyone need one more mac and cheese recipe? Yes.

February 1, 2010

Macaroni & cheese is one of my all-time favorite dishes to make and to serve. Everyone loves it; kids love it, adults, jaded foodies who like to discuss whether or not fatty toro is in season.  I have one friend who regularly eats out at fabulous restaurant after fabulous restaurant and whenever she comes to my house, she prays that macaroni & cheese is on the menu (and when I know she’s coming, it usually is).

One reason grown-ups like it so much is because it is often considered a kind of old-fashioned, maybe even corny dish – many people haven’t had homemade macaroni & cheese in a long, long time. These are the people who tend to sigh with pleasure when the casserole is deposited on the table.

And so I was tickled pink when the Wisconsin Milk Marketing Board offered me the opportunity to concoct a new recipe and choose a cheese from their generous list of indigenous cheeses.  Seriously, in my world, this is a pinch-me moment.  They said, “Pick a cheese!”  I said, “Can I have three?”  They said, “Sure!” (From left to right they are Parmesan, Gruyere and Asiago).

Parmesan Gruyere Asiago

I often add a couple of tablespoons of Dijon mustard to the mix, but for a while now have been having a tiny love affair with chipotles in adobo sauce, and wondering how to incorporate them into…um, everything? If you puree up a little 7-ounce can of the stuff, you can keep it in the fridge for weeks on end and add a teaspoon or two to all kind of savory recipes whenever you want a little heat and a little smokiness.  And you’ll want to make sure you taste for salt, since the pasta and sauce needs the lift and you don’t want to skimp.

I used rotini, because the spirals make me happy.  Click here for the recipe, and to see what 29 other food bloggers came up with with their Wisconsin cheeses.

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