Late Winter

Posted by Lauren Dashwood

"And Winter slumbering in the open air, Wears on his smiling face a dream of Spring"

Where can one turn when week after week they are greeted with the same bleak, grey weather? For years I have always been able to get comfort from a steamy bowl of Macaroni and Cheese. When the dog bites, when the bee stings, when I'm feeling sad... I turn to this pasta. My love for Macaroni and Cheese borders on epic. I grew up having Mac and Cheese for dinner a couple times a month, and my mom makes truly magnificent Macaroni and Cheese. She isn't, however, ready yet to part with her recipe, and I have been left to my own culinary devices. Some of my efforts have proved more fruitful than others; I began by simply trying to microwave cheese onto cooked pasta.

Now, in the last weeks of a very long and lingering winter, I find I am craving this hefty and cheesy pasta. It seems to be the only thing that can stand up to the sting of the wind and the whip of the rain after a long hard day.

A far cry from Kraft Dinner and other imposters, my macaroni has to be thick, creamy and absolutely lousy with cheese. Here we have two recipes for Mac and Cheese, they hit all the right notes. They comfort and they soothe. Avalon's Ritzy Macaroni and Cheese, with feta and cayenne mixed in, is a tangy and suave dish. My Three Cheese Macaroni, rich with Gruyere, Parmesan and Blue cheeses, is full bodied and sophisticated.

For an undeniably cozy, yet luxurious meal, try either of these pastas paired with a Pear, Arugula and Pancetta Salad and a dashing Spanish Red.