Macaroni Milanaise

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Originating in “The Escoffier Cookbook” originally as a “garnish” for lamp chops, this was essentially macaroni & cheese for fancy people. If you double the recipe however, this serves particularly well as a main dish. Escoffier would add truffles and tongue to the mix, as can you if you like, although this is not necessary.  Serve with a salad or alongside lamp chops, and say a word of thanks for the old ways.


  • ½ pound macaroni pasta, or cavatelli, gemelli, ziti etc. (dried)
  • 4 thin slices ham, roughly  2 ounces, (sliced into thin ribbons)
  • 3 or 4small mushrooms, sliced thin (wild mushroom work particularly well)
  • 2tablespoons tomato purée
  • 2tablespoons Madeira
  • 3tablespoons Parmesan cheese (grated)
  • 3tablespoons Gruyère cheese (grated)
  • 2tablespoons butter (unsalted)
  • ½ teaspoon nutmeg (ground)
  • Salt (Kosher) and freshly ground black pepper, according to preference.

Nutritional Information

        • Nutritional analysis per serving (4 servings)
        387 calories; 14 grams fat; 7 grams saturated fat; 0 grams trans fat; 4 grams monounsaturated fat; 0 grams polyunsaturated fat; 45 grams carbohydrates; 2 grams dietary fiber; 2 grams sugars; 17 grams protein; 41 milligrams cholesterol; 387 milligrams sodium

The information shown is estimate based on the available ingredients and preparation. This should not replace a professional nutritionist’s advice.


  1. Heat heavily salted water in a large pot over high heat. Allow to boil.
  2. Add the pasta, and cook until just shy of tender (according to instructions on box).
  3. In the meantime, place the mushrooms, ham, and tomato purée in a small pan, and drizzle the Madeira over the top. Cook over medium heat until you’ve reduced the liquid to a glaze, the ham is heated through, and mushrooms begin to brown. Turn heat off and set aside.
  4. Being sure to reserve a cup of pasta water, drain the pasta thoroughly. Return pasta to pot, add cheeses and better, and stir to mix. Add seasoning. Add a little of the reserved pasta water & stir if necessary to loosen the pasta & aid in the melting of the cheeses. Finally, add in the mushroom mixture and combine. Taste, and adjust seasoning if required. Serve as preferred, alongside a salad or as a garnish for your choice of lamb!