Porcini and Pumpkin Ale Mac & Cheese

Porcini and Pumpkin Ale Mac & Cheese

From the Thermador and Tastespotting Ultimate Recipe Contest

Submitted by: Laura Davis
http://tideandthyme.com

Inspired by a dish at Laura’s local brewpub - their version was a stovetop version, but she thinks the baking really takes it to the next level. Letting the flavors meld and mingle into sheer perfection!          


Serves 4, generously   

1 oz. dried porcini mushrooms
1 cup cremini mushrooms, chopped
1 shallot, finely diced
1 clove garlic, minced
1 pound (16 oz.) small pasta shape, such as shells
6 Tbsp. butter
3 Tbsp. flour
2 1/2 cups milk
1/2 cup Pumpkin ale (such as Dogfish Head's Punkin Ale)
1/2 tsp. salt
2 cups sharp white cheddar cheese, shredded
1 cup Fontina cheese, grated
1 cup breadcrumbs or panko
kosher salt

Boil water and 1 tbsp kosher salt in a large stockpot. Once boiling, add pasta and cook for 5 minutes. Drain, rinsing pasta with cold water, and set aside until ready to use.

Place the dried mushrooms in a microwavable-safe bowl and cover with water. Cook on high for 30 seconds, and let sit and rehydrate for 10 minutes. Strain, and roughly chop.

In a large saucepan over medium-high heat, melt 6 tablespoons of the butter. Add the cremini mushroom and shallot, and saute for about 3 minutes, until starting to brown on the edge. Add the garlic, and cook until fragrant, about 30 seconds. Add the flour, and let cook, stirring constantly for about 3 minutes. Slowly whisk in the beer, as well as the milk, scraping the bottom of the pan to release any browned bits. Cook over medium heat, whisking constantly, until mixture thickens. Add in cheese and chopped porcini mushrooms, and stir to combine. Season to taste with salt and pepper.

Add pasta to the saucepan with the cheese sauce, and mix to combine. Place in 2 quart casserole dish, sprinkle the breadcrumbs on the top, and bake for 1 hour or until browned and bubbly.