I don’t even know where to begin.

I keep saying that every week it is the best one, yet, but…  really.  This may be the best one, yet!

Victor has finally made his way through the Pasta Issue of La Cucina Italiana magazine.  This recipe came from the just-arrived February issue.  The same issue I got the Gianduja yesterday.

This is a really grown-up Mac and Cheese with three different cheeses that just knock your socks off topped with lemon, orange, grana padano, and parsley that just explodes a citrusy freshness in your mouth.

It is gastronomic heaven.  The sauce is three very different cheeses that blend perfectly together.  No one overpowers another.  The fresh lemon and orange mixed with the freshness of parsley and a slightly salty grana padano cheese adds a complete contrast but at the same time blends perfectly.

Gastronomic heaven, indeed.  The taste-buds are going to be talking about this one for days!

Trottole ai Formaggi e Gremolata di Agrumi

Trottole with Cheese and Citrus Gremolata

  • salt
  • 1 lemon
  • 1 orange
  • 1/2 cup packed flat-leaf parsley leaves
  • 3 tablespoons freshly-grated Parmigiano-Reggiano or Grana Padano cheese
  • 2 cups whole milk
  • 3 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 3 tablespoons unbleached all-purpose flour
  • 4 1/2 ounces gorgonzola cheese (about 1 cup)
  • 4 1/2 ounces taleggio cheese, bubed (about 1 cup)
  • 3 ounces fontina cheese, cubed (about 1/2 cup, packed)
  • 1 pound Trottole pasta – uniquely curled pasta rings surrounding a center stalk  (or Fusilli or other short pasta)

Bring a large pot of salted water to boil.

Wask lemon and orange; zest half of each fruit, avoiding the white pith.  Finely chop zests together with parsley; place in a bowl and stir in Parmigiano-Reggiano or Grana Padana.  Set gremolata aside.

In medium saucepan, bring milk just to boil over medium-low heat; remove from heat.  In large saucepan, melt butter over low heat.  Add flour; cook, stirring constantly with a wodden spoon for 2 minutes.  Do not brown.  Remove from heat.  Add 2 tablespoons milk to flour mixture, stirring constantly until milk is incorporated.  Repeat until 1/2 cup of the milk has been added.  Add remaining milk 1/2 cup at a time, incorporating between additions, until all milk has been added.  Return yo low heat and cook, stirring frequently, especially along corners of pan, until sauce is the consistency of thick cream.  Stir in remaining cheeses; cover to keep warm.

Cook pasta in boiling water until al dente.  Drain and immediately transfer to a large serving bowl.  Add cheese sauce, toss to combine and divide among bowls.  Sprinkle with gremolata and serve immediately.

The recipe does make the white sauce seem a bit overly complicated, but it’s really just a rather simple-to-prepare sauce with cheese.

But it’s an extremely good simple-to-prepare sauce with cheese.

This would also make a great side dish and a pretty spectacular buffet dish, as well.

This one is going into the rotation, for sure!