Crawfish Mac and Cheese

Total Time:
1 hr 30 min
Prep:
30 min
Cook:
1 hr

Yield:
8 servings
Level:
Intermediate

CATEGORIES
Ingredients
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1/3 cup diced pancetta
  • 1/2 cup small diced onion
  • 1 teaspoon minced garlic
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 5 tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • 3 cups milk or half-and-half
  • 3/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground white pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground nutmeg
  • 1 pound cooked and peeled crawfish tails, with any fat
  • 1 pound orecchiette pasta, or small shell pasta, cooked al dente, drained
  • 4 ounces grated Parmigiano-Reggiano
  • 4 ounces grated white Cheddar
  • 4 ounces grated Gruyere
  • 4 ounces grated fontina
  • 1/4 cup bread crumbs
  • 1/2 teaspoon Essence, recipe follows
  • Emeril's ESSENCE Creole Seasoning (also referred to as Bayou Blast):
  • 2 1/2 tablespoons paprika
  • 2 tablespoons salt
  • 2 tablespoons garlic powder
  • 1 tablespoon black pepper
  • 1 tablespoon onion powder
  • 1 tablespoon cayenne pepper
  • 1 tablespoon dried oregano
  • 1 tablespoon dried thyme
Directions

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.

Set a large, wide-mouthed 6-quart pot over medium heat. Add the olive oil and pancetta to the pot and cook the pancetta until lightly browned, 3 to 4 minutes. Add the onions and garlic to the pan and cook until translucent, 3 to 4 minutes. Add the butter and flour and cook, stirring, for 3 minutes. Add the milk or half-and-half and whisk until smooth. Bring to a boil then reduce the heat to a simmer. Season with the salt, white pepper, and nutmeg and cook for 3 minutes. Add the crawfish to the pot and stir to combine. Remove from the heat and fold in the cooked pasta and grated cheeses. Stir to combine well. Transfer to a 3-quart baking dish such as a 9 by 13-inch casserole. In a small bowl, combine the bread crumbs with the Essence and sprinkle over the top of the casserole. Bake uncovered until golden brown and bubbling, 40 to 45 minutes.

Emeril's ESSENCE Creole Seasoning (also referred to as Bayou Blast):

Combine all ingredients thoroughly.

Yield: 2/3 cup

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