Paprika adds smoky flavor to this super-creamy dish that includes Fontina, cheddar and mascarpone. Cheese crisps replace the usual bread crumbs on top.

Laura Werlin
Recipe by Food & Wine April 2011

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Quentin Bacon

Recipe Summary

total:
45 mins
Yield:
4
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Ingredients

Ingredient Checklist

Directions

Instructions Checklist
  • Sprinkle half of the cheddar onto an extra-large nonstick skillet in four 4-inch mounds. Cook over moderate heat until the cheese is lacy and golden, about 4 minutes. Using a flexible spatula, carefully flip each crisp and cook until golden, about 1 minute longer. Drain on a paper towel–lined plate and break into large pieces.

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  • In a very large saucepan, melt the butter. Whisk in the flour and paprika and cook over moderate heat until bubbling, about 2 minutes. Add the milk and whisk until smooth. Cook over moderate heat, whisking constantly, until thick and creamy, about 5 minutes. Stir in the remaining cheddar and the Fontina and cook over low heat until melted. Off the heat, stir in the mascarpone and season with salt.

  • Meanwhile, cook the macaroni in a large pot of salted boiling water until al dente. Drain and add to the cheese sauce. Cook over low heat, stirring constantly, until hot and bubbling, about 2 minutes. Spoon the mac and cheese into bowls, top with the cheese crisps and serve.

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