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Author Notes: This creamy mac and cheese is inspired by the stovetop classic, and comes from Joshua Kulp and Christine Cikowski of Honey Butter Fried Chicken in Chicago. You can use grated sharp cheddar in place of the sharp cheddar cheese spread—but don't leave out the pimento peppers and buttermilk, which give this mac a piquant spin. One tip for a cook tackling this mac at home? "Don’t overcook the pasta," say Kulp and Cikowski. "Shoot for al dente." Or, if you're really craving comfort, order it delivered to your door through Caviar. —Food52
pound fusilli pasta
pound sharp cheddar cheese spread, or grated sharp cheddar cheese
cup pimento peppers, pureed and strained
- Bring salted water to a boil and cook pasta until al dente. While the pasta is cooking, prepare a large bowl of ice water. Drain the pasta, then shock the pasta in the ice bath, then drain again.
- Heat the cheese and buttermilk in a medium pot over medium heat until cheese melts into the buttermilk.
- Add the pasta and the pimento puree to the cheese sauce and stir to combine, then cook for a few minutes (stirring occasionally) until the sauce adheres to the pasta and the pasta is hot. Season with salt and pepper to taste.