Decadent “Lobster” Mac with Dutch Gouda

Yesterday, I blogged about trying Dutch Gouda cheese and how creamy and wonderful it tastes, so I thought, what is the best thing to make with melted cheese?  Well, macaroni and cheese, of course!  And the lobster?  That’s just for added ooh-la-la!

The market was out of the macaroni that I buy, so I used rotini pasta, but penne would be tasty too!

Instead of a fresh lobster or lobster tail, I bought a package of imitation lobster and pollack bits which you can find in the market near the refrigerated seafood products.  The brand I picked retails for about $3, and considering that this recipe feeds 4-6 people, that is a bargain!

Decadent “Lobster” Mac with Dutch Gouda
Serves 4-6.

1 pkg. imitation lobster (or about 1 1/4 cup fresh lobster, cut in chunks)
4-5 cups of rotini pasta
3 cups of Dutch Gouda cheese, shredded◊◊

◊◊  Be sure you choose a Gouda with a bit of a bite so that the dish won’t be too mild!

3 tablespoons of butter
2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
3 turns of the pan of milk or cream
squeeze of fresh lemon juice
1 teaspoon Old Bay seasoning or similar spice blend
1 clove of garlic, minced or grated
freshly ground black pepper
2 tablespoons of parsley, fresh or dried

lemon wedges, for serving

Prepare the pasta according to the package directions.

While the pasta is boiling away, melt a tablespoon of butter in a large skillet.  Add the lobster chunks, the Old Bay seasoning, and a squeeze of lemon juice.  Cook the lobster for 2-3 minutes, stirring to coat it in lemon juice and seasoning.

Drain the pasta and set the lobster chunks on top of the warm pasta.  Leave the drippings in the skillet.

To make the Gouda sauce, melt the remaining 2 tablespoons of butter over medium-high heat in the skillet and add the flour, stirring to make a rue or thickening agent.  A good rule of thumb is equal parts flour and fat.

Add the milk or cream and whisk vigorously to incorporate.  Allow the sauce to bubble and thicken a few minutes until you can feel that it has thickened when you stir it with a spoon.

Finally, add in the cheese and stir until it has melted and the sauce is smooth and shiny.

At this point, I add in a bit of freshly ground pepper and the garlic, stirring to incorporate.

Then the lobster and pasta go into the Gouda sauce and are coated in Gouda goodness.  Finally, a bit of fresh or dried parsley adds a little green to the dish.

When you are ready to serve, you can add a sprinkling of Old Bay on top, a extra bit of Gouda, or a lemon wedge.