My Wife’s Notes – 2010 La Stella La Stellina Rosato – Ahi Tuna Mac & Cheese

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Ahi Tuna Mac & Cheese

  • 3 cups elbow macaroni
  • 3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 cup whole milk
  • 1 cups heavy cream
  • 4 tablespoons (1/2 stick) unsalted butter
  • 1/4 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1 1/2 cups Gruyère, Edam, Danish Blue or other cheese
  • 1 1/2 cups aged white cheddar
  • Coarse salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 1/4 cup unseasoned bread crumbs
  • 1 large Ahi Tuna fillet

Preheat the oven to 400° F.  Cook the macaroni in a pot of salted water for about 5-6 minutes; the pasta should be a little more firm that you’d normally eat. When it is finished cooking, drain the water and place the pasta in an oven-safe casserole dish. Coat the pasta in 1 tbsp olive oil, and set it aside to cool.  Cut a chunk of the Tuna fillet (about 1/4 the total fillet) and dice it, adding the small pieces to the pasta, mixing them evenly.

Heat the milk and cream in a saucepan over, gently simmering.  In a large saucepan, melt the butter and create a roux by slowly adding in the flour, whisking constantly until all flour has been added and the mixture is free of lumps. Pour in the cream mixture slowly, continuing to whisk.  Add one cup of each of the cheeses, continuing to whisk as the cheese melts. Add salt and pepper to your desires.

Pour the cheese and cream mixture over the pasta, and mix well.  Top with the remaining cheese and cover with bread crumbs. Bake for 25 minutes, until the cheese is bubbling all over the top. Once it’s done, remove from the oven and let it rest for five minutes.

While the mac and cheese is baking, heat a non-stick fry pan to medium-high.  Coat the tuna fillet in olive oil and season each side with salt and pepper.  Sear the tuna on both sides, about 3-6 minutes depending on the thickness of the tuna.  I like it rare in the center, but it can be cooked to your liking.   Serve by topping macaroni with 1/4 inch slices of tuna.

Alana is all about traditions at Christmas time; she likes to watch the same movies on Christmas Eve, make the same baking that she and her mom made as a kid…our lead up to Christmas has been scheduled for months.  And since this is our first Christmas as husband and wife, we wanted to start some fun new traditions!

To that end, we created the tradition of Rhys and Alana’s Christmas Eve Eve Comfort Food Extravaganza.  And what could be more comforting than mac and cheese?

To take it up a notch, I added rare seared Ahi Tuna, as a modern take on tuna casserole.

La Stella La Stellina Rosato 2010And to pair with it, we brought out a bottle of Rosé we’d been saving for a special occasion.  Alana has been really into Rosé this year, and this bottle of La Stella La Stellina Rosato 2010 was highly recommended to us.

La Stella La Stellina Rosato 2010

My Notes:

This bright strawberry red wine practically glows in the glass.  The nose is sweet, floral and aromatic…there’s plenty of different fruits and berries, as if I’d walked into a farmer’s market in June.  The first sip is sweet and full, with more of the berry flavors popping out.  Strawberry is most predominant, but blackberry and currant comes out in the finish.  When paired with the food, it starts to sparkle, the creamy cheese sauce bringing out a snappy tartness that cleans off the palette. A good pairing, but it would be even better on a summer patio with a goat cheese and strawberry spinach salad. 90 points.

My Wife’s Notes:

“Ugh, I LOVE it. SO GOOD. I love Rosé!”

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