November 13, 2014
On Sunday we hunkered down and went about the business of making crab macaroni and cheese. Our inspiration, Nancy Vienneau's Third Thursday Community Potluck Cookbook.
We were eager.
A humble dish of pasta and cheese and crab.
While the water worked it's way up to a sing, Roberto worked on the bechamel. I grated the cheese.
Everything was in tune, as it usually is. Us, with our tasks. The goal. To sit. To eat—to eat pasta.
With our pasta to the tooth—specifically, De Cecco no. 50 Shells—we reserved some pasta water, drained the pasta and poured it back into the pot. In went the sauce, followed up with the crab. A gentle stir to settle everything into place. We poured this clever mix of ingredients into a porcelain baking dish, sprinkled on the last of the cheddar, a layer of panko, and set the dish into the oven to bake.
Thirty minutes can be a long time, however, it was a worth the wait.
The top beckoned us with it's golden crispness. The bottom bubbled and steamed. The pasta lay limp, cradling bits of crab—shells cradle so nicely.
We took our places at the table and commenced to eat.
Panko, what a revelation.
The crab, rustic and rich all at once.
The sauce, in it's alchemic glory, caught us a off guard. Our taste buds were experiencing something altogether new.
And, I—I'm here. Once more. Inspired.