Please don't hate me for what I am about to do. I know you just got done inhaling enough turkey, mashed potatoes, and gravy to feed a small country....but I couldn't resist sharing this recipe for triple truffle mac and cheese. Yes, you read that correctly. Triple truffle. As in three types of truffle seasonings. As in three times the deliciousness. As in the best darn truffle mac and cheese to ever grace the face of the earth (a bit presumptuous of a statement, I know, but as they say, if the noodle fits.....Wait. They don't say noodle?! They say shoe? Well, toe-mate-ohs, toe-mah-toes. Noodles, shoes. You know what I mean.). Mac and cheese in itself is the ultimate comfort food. But when you go ahead and add in all of the truffle things (I blame Trader Joe's for this!) and the creamiest of cheeses, well, that's just a recipe for heaven in a pan (and possibly a heart attack, but we'll pretend we don't know that). I must warn you, you might not be able to fit into your pants after eating this, your heart may have some trouble beating from all the cream and cheese, but I promise, it will be worth it. Just keep repeating after me "It will all be worth it....it will all be worth it..." Picture it with me for a minute and I think you'll understand why. Cheesy, creamy, goodness embracing each piece of pasta like silk draping over skin, warmed to buttery perfection, topped with the crunchiest of toppings, and finished with a feathering of truffle essences in not one, not two, but three forms. Don't even try to fool yourself...you know you want some....
TRIPLE TRUFFLE MAC AND CHEESE
- 1 pound of pasta
- 4 tablespoon of butter (unsalted)
- 5 ounces mushrooms, sliced (should equal about 1 1/2 cups; I used baby bella mushrooms)
- 2 large cloves of garlic, minced
- 3 tablespoons flour
- 1 1/4 cups heavy cream (see notes)
- 1 cup water
- 1/2 cup mushroom brie, cut into small pieces (found at Trader Joe's; can also use regular brie)
- 1 1/2 cups grated truffle cheese (I get mine at Trader Joe's)
- 1/4 cup grated parmesan cheese
- 1/4 cup grated cheddar cheese (I used a sharp white cheddar)
- 4-5 tablespoons of truffle oil (Again, I found mine at Trader Joe's, but I linked another one below)
- 1 teaspoon of truffle salt (You guessed it...I found mine at Trader Joe's, but I linked some below)
- Fresh ground pepper
- 3/4 cups of Italian or regular breadcrumbs
Bring a large oven-safe pot of water to boil. Toss in the pasta and cook until al dente, about 8-9 minutes. Drain, rinse under cold water, and set aside.
Back in the pan, melt 1 tablespoon of butter over medium heat. Sauté the mushrooms until they are golden brown, about 8-10 minutes. Remove the mushrooms and set them aside.
In the same pan, melt the remaining butter (should be 3 tablespoons) at medium heat, then toss in the garlic and sauté for 30 seconds. Use a whisk to stir in the flour, then slowly start adding the cream and water, a little at a time. Make sure to whisk after each addition to avoid any lumps. Continue mixing until all of the liquid has been added. Allow the sauce to cook for about 5-7 more minutes, or until it has thickened slightly, making sure to continue the stirring.
Once the sauce has thickened and it begins to bubble, add in the cheeses. Stir until they are melted, then add in the mushrooms, as well as 2-3 tablespoons of the truffle oil (more or less depending on your tastes) and the truffle salt (again, you can adjust the amount based on your tastes preferences). Mix until everything is well combined then fold in the pasta. Season to taste with fresh ground pepper as well as any additional salt or oil.
In a small bowl combine the breadcrumbs and the remaining truffle oil (about 2 tablespoons). Sprinkle this mixture on top of the pasta, then bake the mac n' cheese for 20-25 minutes, or until golden brown, at 375 degrees. Remove from the oven and allow to cool for about 5 minutes before serving.
- To balance out this heavy dish, I like to pair it with a light and fresh salad.
- For the pasta, I like to use a fun shape like campanelle, but you can use any type of pasta that you want.
- I prefer to make this in an oven-safe pan like my Le Creuset as it make this a one-dish meal with easy cleanup. If you don't have an oven-safe pan, feel free to use a pot or skillet for the stovetop steps then transfer the pasta to a baking dish before sprinkling it with the breadcrumb mixture. If you do use a baking dish, just be sure to bake the pasta for only about 15 minutes.
- For the heavy cream and water, you can also just use 2 1/4 cups of milk (I'd use 2%), or less cream and more water (i.e. 1 1/2 cups of water and 3/4 cups cream), or even half-and-half in place of the heavy cream. Whatever combination you settle on, just make sure to use 2 1/4 cups of total liquid.