tasty tuesday...spinach and artichoke mac and cheese...

So the lovely Farmer City's Wife is hosting Tasty Tuesday on her lovely blog City Wife, Country Life. You might wonder why I am posting this on a Wednesday. Well you can blame Snowmageddon 2010 for my timing.

Now that the power and Internet are back up I can post my recipe. It is meatless, filled with spinach and yummy artichokes. It was Rachel Rays #1 downloaded recipe on her website in 2009. I can understand why. It is rich and filling. I doubled the spinach and used whole grain pasta to relieve some of the guilt associated with fontina cheese...lots and lots of it!

Come on over to City Wife, Country Life website, join the fun and link one of your favorite recipes.

Celebrate the Feast!

Spinach and Artichoke Mac and Cheese
adapted from RachelRay.com

1 pound semolina or whole wheat penne
2 tablespoons EVOO – Extra Virgin Olive Oil
3 tablespoons butter
1 medium onion, finely chopped
3 cloves garlic, finely chopped or grated
3 tablespoons flour
1/2 cup white wine
2 cups milk
Freshly grated nutmeg, about 1/4 teaspoon or to taste
1 10-ounce box frozen chopped spinach, defrosted and wrung dry in a kitchen towel
1 10-ounce box frozen chopped artichokes, defrosted and wrung dry in a kitchen towel
Black pepper
1 1/2 cups shredded Italian Fontina cheese, plus additional for sprinkling on top
1 1/2 cups grated Parmigiano Reggiano cheese, plus additional for sprinkling on top

Bring a large pot of water to a boil for pasta, salt water and cook pasta to al dente.

While the pasta water comes to a boil, place a medium pot over medium-low heat with 2 turns of the pan of EVOO, about 2 tablespoons, and the butter. Add the onion and garlic to the pan and cook the veggies until very soft, about 10 minutes. Then heat the broiler and position rack in the middle of the oven. 
Turn the heat up to medium-high and sprinkle the flour into the pan. Cook for about 1 minute then whisk the wine into the pan, cooking for another minute to burn off the alcohol. Whisk the milk into the pan and bring up to a bubble. Add the nutmeg, spinach, artichokes, salt and pepper to the sauce and simmer until thickened and vegetables are warmed through, 2-3 minutes more. Add 1 cup of each of the cheeses to the sauce and stir until melted.

Toss the prepared sauce with the cooked pasta and transfer to a casserole dish. Sprinkle some more Fontina and Parmigiano over the top and bake until the cheese has melted and the top is golden brown, about 30 minutes.

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