We have a guest in the kitchen! Fresh off of our stint at the 2013 Toronto Gourmet Food & Wine Expo, we knew we had to get this recipe for mushroom mac n' cheese. Chef Professor Olaf Mertens of Niagara College's Canadian Food and Wine Institute has been kind enough to share his recipe with us today! We know you'll love it as much as we did!!
CRIMINI AND BUTTON MUSHROOM MAC & CHEESE
8 ounces dried elbow macaroni or cavatappi noodles
Cook pasta noodles until al dente, then strain the noodles and let dry, do not rinse noodles with cold water.
ONTARIO CHEESE SAUCE
1/2 cup unsalted butter
1/2 cup very finely minced yellow onion
1/2 cup all-purpose flour
6 cups whole milk
6 ounces Ontario Guernsey Girl cheese, grated
6 ounces Ontario white-cheddar cheese, grated
1/2 cup reserved for topping
Coarse salt and freshly ground black pepper
⅛ teaspoon cayenne pepper
⅛ teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
ROASTED WINE SOAKED MUSHROOMS
1 cup crimini button mushrooms, trimmed (halved if needed)
1 cup white button mushrooms, trimmed (halved if needed)
1/4 cup oil
Coarse salt and ground pepper
2 tablespoons white wine vinegar
2 cup Niagara College Chardonnay
1/4 cup fresh parsley leaves
1/4 cup fresh sliced chives
1/4 cup cold butter, cubed
In a large frying pan heat over medium high heat and add in oil. Add in polished clean mushrooms and roast until golden brown, season and deglaze with chardonnay wine. Reduce wine by 50 % of its volume, splash in the vinegar and start to stir in the cold butter cubes. Season to taste and drop in fresh herbs, now spoon on the Mushrooms over the mac and cheese.
DIRECTIONS FOR PREPARATION
In a pot over medium heat, add in butter and saute onions until translucent. Dust onions and butter with flour and stir, then pour in cold milk and stir well, until sauce mixture appears. Season with spices and fold in the cheeses. Mix the noodles with 3/4 of this sauce and place into a baking dish and sprinkle the 1/2 cup of cheddar and bake at 350 F for 10 minutes. Pour extra sauce on top and sprinkle with goat cheese crumble.
Now top with roasted wine soaked buttered Crimini and Button mushrooms and enjoy!
From the childhood summers in Germany stirring his Oma’s giant pots to
washing pots for popular chefs, Olaf Mertens always wanted to be a chef. He
left Canada for Germany at 18, starting a culinary apprenticeship that led him to
cooking in Budapest and helping a grand five star hotel celebrate Berlin’s 750th
birthday. He earned the honor of a Top Skilled Apprentice for the Class of 1989
and was then awarded Berlin's Apprentice of the Year in 1989. He then spent
eight years at Rogues Restaurant in Mississauga, Ontario, leading it to awarded
one of the top 40 restaurants in Canada. He then left Canada again to return to
Germany where he successfully completed the grueling Küchenmeister in the
Steigenberger hotelier school in Bavaria. As Captain of Team Canada in
international competitions, he led a talented team of chefs to compete for two
consecutive silvers medals in Limerick, Ireland and Dallas, Texas. His
experiences led him to where he was the last 13 years, as executive chef,
founder and partner of three Mississauga HIP Restaurants, On The Curve Hot
Stove & Wine Bar & Ten Restaurant & Wine Bar and West 50 Pourhouse and
Grille, as well as his catering division, Catering...from the HIP. Olaf has had
appearances on the food networks; Summers Best, Sugar and guest chef spots
on other television and radio broadcasts. His cookbooks are Cooking from the
Hip and Olaf’s Kitchen: A Master Chef Shares his Passion. Olaf has a very
strong bond with his Mississauga home town community contributing to several
local charities and events. When he’s not cooking up a storm, he is at home with
his wife of 21 years, Jennifer and his three sons, Nicolas 19, Taylor 16 and Owen
13. 2010 began a new chapter as Olaf takes on a new challenge. He has joined
the Canadian Food & Wine Institute at Niagara College as full time Chef
Professor. He looks forward to sharing his knowledge and experiences as he
teaches young cooks the skills of the professional kitchen.
It's such a treat to get a Chef's recipe and I can't wait to make this at home. I've been dreaming of it since I tried it at the Toronto Gourmet Food & Wine Expo. Thanks so much to Chef Professor Olaf Mertens of Niagara College's Canadian Food and Wine Institute for sharing this creamy comfort dish with us!
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