So, another Valentines Day has come and gone………We had a very lovely dinner of Lobster Mac and Cheese. I had been wanting to make this dish ever since I saw Ina Garten make it on the Barefoot Contessa on the Food Network several years back.
Confession time………..1. I am a total Food Network Junkie. I have been hooked on it from day one……2. I want to be the Barefoot Contessa.There is something about Ina Garten and her show that inspires me each and every time I watch it.
I wanted to make something special for Tim for Valentines dinner. Our local supermarket had lobster on sale, and we both love mac & cheese……..sooooo an idea was born! Lobster Mac and Cheese!
Now, when I say we love mac & cheese you must realize that what I am really speaking of is, of course………the boxed velveta & shells…………I know, I know, processed, out of the box……..but even us recipe creating, chefy, food bloggers sometimes just need a day off. Nothing fancy, easy, and lets be honest it really tastes good!!!!!!
But this was not the time for that, and I could not mix real lobster into boxed mac & cheese. So it had to be made from scratch.I tweaked the recipe I found on Food Network and I must say, the result almost put the velveta to shame…….OK it did!!!
So, after dinner, which was very yummy, we had individual cheesecakes, chocolate, with chocolate covered peanuts, and dipped strawberries for dessert. I did find out unbeknowest to me, Tim does not like strawberries all that much. I know, I have had to make the grand sacrifice and eat them all myself………oh woe is me…… 😉
But our dinner was so pretty, I had Tim take a few pictures and I posted them on my Facebook. I had quite a few requests for the recipes, so here it is. The next time you need a special dinner give this a try. The really nice thing about this recipe is that you can make it ahead and bake it when you are ready………..you know after you clean up the kitchen, set a nice table, put on some music…….ahh………. romance is still in the air !
- 1 pound pasta of your choice ( chose a pasta that will hold the sauce like cavatappi bow tie )
- 4 cups half & half ( you can also use regular milk)
- 8 tablespoons unsalted butter, divided
- ½ cup flour
- 4 cups Swiss cheese, grated
- 2 cups Cheddar cheese, grated
- ½ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
- ½ teaspoon nutmeg
- 1½ pounds cooked lobster meat
- 1½ cups panko breadcrumbs
- Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F.
- Bring a large pot of water to boil. Season boiling water with salt, add the pasta and cook according to the directions on the package, 6 to 8 minutes. Drain well.
- Meanwhile, heat the half & half in a small saucepan, or in the microwave until warm, do not boil. In a large pot, melt 6 tablespoons of butter and add the flour. Cook over low heat for 2 minutes, stirring with a whisk. Add the warm half & half and cook for a minute or two more, until thickened and smooth. Remove from heat, add the Swiss and Cheddar cheese, the pepper, and nutmeg. Add the cooked pasta and lobster and stir well. Place the mixture in 6 to 8 individual gratin dishes.
- Melt the remaining 2 tablespoons of butter, combine them with the panko breadcrumbs, and sprinkle on the top. At this point you can place the mac & cheese in the refrigerator and bake later.
- When ready to bake place in preheated 375* for 30 to 35 minutes, or until the sauce is bubbly and the macaroni is browned on the top.