1 pound Elbow Macaroni (or your favorite medium-size pasta)
4 cups Milk
1 large bulb of Garlic
2 cups Mimolette, grated
2 cups French Emmental, grated or shredded
1 cup Beaufort, finely grated (save half for top)
1/2 cup Breadcrumbs
3 tbsp Plain Flour
3 tbsp French Butter
1 tbsp Dijon Mustard
Sea Salt & Freshly Ground Black Pepper
Extra Virgin Olive Oil
Step 1: roast the garlic
Preheat oven to 350º. Chop off the top off the garlic bulb to expose the cloves, drizzle with olive oil and wrap in foil. Pop in the oven for 45-60 minutes or until golden brown and soft.
Step 2: make the cheese sauce
Use a butter knife to scoop out the cloves and mash into a paste. Add to a large saucepan over medium heat with 3 tbsp French butter. Stir in 3 heaping tbsp flour, then very slowly pour in 4 cups warmed milk, whisking to avoid lumps. Important to make sure the sauce thickens before adding the cheese, don't use the cheese to thicken the sauce. Add 1 tbsp dijon mustard, then stir in 2 cups grated Mimolette, 2 cups grated French Emmental and ½ cup Beaufort cheese (other half will go on top). If overly thick, add a little warm water or white wine.
Step 3: boil the macaroni
Cook 1 pound of pasta in salted boiling water and cook to al dente (i.e. still firm when bitten). Reserve the warm pasta water to use later as a thinner if the cheese sauce becomes too thick. Preheat oven to 375ºF.
Step 4: bake to perfection
Add everything to a large baking dish (9 x 13-inch) sprayed with cooking oil, cover top with other ½ cup finely grated Beaufort cheese and ½ cup breadcrumbs. Add a little salt and freshly ground pepper. Bake at 375ºF for 20-25mins or until golden brown. Top with a sprinkle of fresh chives.