gorgonzola macaroni and cheese recipe
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Creamy Gorgonzola Macaroni and Cheese

Creamy Gorgonzola Macaroni and Cheese with sweet caramelized leeks, salty pancetta, and a blend of three rich cheeses is an elegant twist on a comfort food classic. This recipe is best served soon after it’s made.
Course Main Course, Side Dish
Cuisine American
Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 40 minutes
Total Time 1 hour
Servings 6 servings
Calories 630kcal
Author Amanda Biddle

Ingredients

  • 8 ounces pasta (such as pipettes or medium shells)
  • kosher salt and freshly-ground black pepper
  • 1/2 cup Panko breadcrumbs
  • 1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons Parmigiano Reggiano , divided
  • 1/2 cup crumbled Gorgonzola *
  • 2 cups shredded Fontina
  • 1 cup half and half
  • 1-1/2 cups whole milk
  • 3 tablespoons all purpose flour
  • 1 leek (white and light green parts only), washed thoroughly and cut into 1/4-inch slices
  • 4 ounces diced pancetta
  • 5 tablespoons unsalted butter , divided, plus additional for buttering ramekins
  • chopped parsley or snipped chives (optional), for garnish

Instructions

  • Preheat oven to 400 degrees F with rack in middle position. Butter a 9-inch square baking dish, or six, 10-ounce ramekins. Place on a baking sheet and set aside.
  • Mix Panko, 1 tablespoon melted butter, 2 tablespoons Parmigiano Reggiano, and a pinch of salt and pepper in a small bowl. Set aside.
  • Cook pasta to "al-dente" in a large pot of salted boiling water. Reserve 1 cup of the pasta water before draining well.
  • While bringing your pasta water to a boil, melt 4 tablespoons of butter in a large, heavy-bottomed pot until foaming subsides. Add pancetta and cook over medium-high heat until fat is rendered and pancetta is just beginning to crisp.
  • Add leeks, 1/2 teaspoon each kosher salt and black pepper to the pot. Cook until leeks are softened, about 5 minutes. Reduce heat and continue cooking, stirring often, until leeks are very soft and caramelized, about 15 minutes longer. Stir in flour and cook for 1 minute. Add milk and half and half, stirring until sauce is smooth and thickened, about 3 minutes. Whisk in Fontina, Gorgonzola, and 1/4 cup Parmigiano Reggiano. Season to taste with additional salt and pepper.
  • Add cooked pasta to the cheese sauce, stirring until well combined. Stir in enough pasta water to make the sauce creamy, but not thin and watery (I usually add about 1/4 cup). Transfer pasta to prepared baking dishes and top with breadcrumb mixture. Bake 15-20 minutes, until sauce is bubbly and breadcrumbs are toasted. Sprinkle with parsley or chives, if desired, and serve hot.

Notes

*Gorgonzola can vary in pungency. Taste your Gorgonzola before adding it to the sauce. If it’s very assertive, add a bit less than the recipe calls for, and adjust to taste.

Nutrition

Calories: 630kcal | Carbohydrates: 40g | Protein: 25g | Fat: 40g | Saturated Fat: 22g | Cholesterol: 115mg | Sodium: 743mg | Potassium: 289mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 3g | Vitamin A: 1220IU | Vitamin C: 2.1mg | Calcium: 435mg | Iron: 1.4mg