So… a couple of weeks back The Man and I went to lunch at Yard House in Greenville, SC. If you don’t know Greenville, you should; it’s a foodie mecca about sixty miles from us – closer than Atlanta without the traffic nightmares. We don’t have Yard House in the PNW and although a “chain”, the menu is eclectic, extensive, interesting and the food is excellent. For you aspiring cicerones and ale lovers, they have more than one hundred on tap. The wine list is also respectable.
The menu included a mac n cheese with chicken, mushrooms, bacon and truffle oil. I do NOT like truffles and asked our waiter if the oil could be omitted. He said yes and I ordered the mac n cheese. I am usually disappointed by restaurant mac n cheese… even in The South where mac n cheese is a “staple”… but I always try it when it’s on the menu. If I like it, I mention it here, on Facebook or Twitter… if I don’t… you never hear about it as I don’t want to discredit… anyway… as you can guess, the Yard House mac n cheese was a hit with me… so much so that I asked for the cheeses used… cheddar and parm in a cream sauce… (BTW, they have two sizes on the menu; I ordered the smaller size and still brought half home.) The waiter made a point of telling me the mushrooms were fried in butter before going into the cheese sauce.
As with dishes I like, I started thinking how to duplicate the recipe (or improve upon it) and decided a combination of Sartori’s BellaVitano and SarVecchio would fit my adaptation. In the fridge I had a package of Creminelli’s Calabrese Uncured Salami and decided to use that rather than bacon. Both Sartori and Creminelli graciously sent me these items as part of my pairing project which will debut here on June 1.
The finished dish turned out to be one of the best I’ve created; seriously, the SarVecchio and BellaVitano mixture added a rich complexity that made The Man swoon… so did Miss Anne…
Here’s what I did:
I used my Basic Cheese Sauce recipe with a few tweaks:
8 ounces mushrooms, cut thick to be meaty and juicy; sauteed in 2 ounces of Kerrygold Butter.
1 Package Creminelli Calabrese Uncured Salami; cut into 1/2″ strips.
(I had some roasted chicken but forgot to add it… next time…)
I sautéed the mushrooms in the Kerrygold butter in a large saute pan until golden brown and cooked through. Removed them from the pan. Using the same pan (without washing it) I made my Basic Cheese Sauce substituting 2 1/2 cups of Whole Milk and 3 cups of the Sartori Cheese Mix, instead of 2 and 2.
Once the cheese sauce was made I added in the mushrooms and Calabrese plus the prepared pasta (about 12 ounces) and served it with a fruit salad.
Interviews with Cheese Professionals continue through 2016… sometimes, as “stand-alone” interviews and sometimes as round-table discussions with several Pros answering the same question. Those participating include Cheesemakers, ACS CCPs™,Cheesemongers and Cheese Experts who contribute to this Wonderful World we call “Cheese”.
List of 2015-16 Cheese Professionals.
List of all Cheese Professionals Bios.
Please “Like” MarcellaTheCheesemonger Page on FaceBook.
Studying for one of the 2016 ACS CCP™ exams? Simply want to know more about cheese? Please join our Cheese Study Group at Facebook!!!