Truffle Mac & Cheese

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2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
1 pound Cavatappi (hollow corkscrew-shaped pasta)
1⁄4 cup butter
1⁄4 cup flour
4 cups milk
1 cup cream
1⁄2 teaspoon fresh grated nutmeg
1⁄2 teaspoon truffle salt
1 tablespoon truffle oil
3 cups grated sharp white cheddar cheese
1⁄4 cup Gorgonzola cheese
1⁄4 cup grated Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese
Kosher salt and black pepper to taste

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Cook Cavatappi in boiling salted water with olive oil to al dente stage (firm to the tooth), 8 to 9 minutes. Drain the pasta, reserving 1 cup of pasta water. Do not rinse the pasta.

While the pasta is cooking, prepare sauce.

Melt the butter in saucepan on medium heat.  Stir in the flour. Cook, stirring,
about 3 to 4 minutes.

In separate pan, heat the milk and the cream together until they are hot. Whisk the hot milk and cream into the flour-and-butter mixture until the whole thing is smooth. Add nutmeg, truffle salt, and truffle oil. Bring the sauce to a simmer and slowly whisk in the cheddar, Gorgonzola, and Parmigiano-Reggiano. Whisk until the sauce is smooth. Adjust the thickness with a bit of reserved pasta water.

Add pasta to the sauce and mix well. The sauce should coat the pasta generously with a little extra sauce that will be absorbed during baking.

Coat a 9-inch by 13-inch baking dish or individual casseroles with olive oil. Fill
with pasta.

Bake at 350 degrees for 30 to 40 minutes until bubbly and golden
brown on top. A note of truffle salt and oil: These gorgeous condiments are a big thing these days. In lieu of using costly real truffles in casual dishes, try playing around with
truffle shavings, salts, and oils. They will give you a great bang for the buck. Such novelty truffle products are very versatile—they can give a distinctive aroma and flavor to anything from veggies to popcorn. They are available at gourmet food stores.
A perfect accompaniment to your meal, as a side dish extraordinaire next to a
chipotle meatloaf, grilled sausage or pork tenderloin. Or serve it up as a main
course with crunchy bread and antipasto and you have a meal!

This recipe can be found in Lisa’s Elixir of Life Cookbook at