UPTOWN MACARONI AND CHEESE

We used to joke in our family that not one of us seven children ever
tasted a potato until we left home. We did eat a lot of pasta - our mother's a
wonderful cook - and enjoyed every bite. No doubt everyone, even
potato lovers, secretly pines for rich, creamy mac and cheese. Jazzing it
up with leeks, peppers, corn and prosciutto frees you to serve this colorful
casserole to dinner guests.


4 tbsp. butter, divided
1 large leek, cleaned and chopped
1/2 green pepper, chopped
1/2 red pepper, chopped
1 10 oz. pkg. frozen corn, thawed, or 1 1/2 cups fresh
1 lb. Radiatore Tricolore
1/3 lb. proscuitto, coarsely chopped
1 cup heavy cream or half and half
3 cups grated sharp white Cheddar, divided


Serves 4 to 6

Melt 2 tbsp. butter in large skillet over medium heat. Add chopped leeks and
saute until softened. Add green and red peppers and saute 5 minutes. Add
corn and saute until vegetables are softened, about 4 minutes. Cook pasta
and drain. Return pasta to pot, add 2 tbsp. butter and stir to coat. Add
proscuitto and cream to vegetable mixture and boil. Pour pasta in buttered
9"x12" baking dish, sprinkle with 1 cup Cheddar cheese. Place under
broiler until cheese bubbles. Casserole may also be prepared ahead,
refrigerated, and baked at 350 degrees for 45 minutes.

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