The plate

Four-cheese Macaroni Au Gratin from Wisteria Southern Gastropub, Morganton

photo courtesy of Thomas Strong Photography—photo courtesy of Thomas Strong Photography
Four-Cheese Macaroni Au Gratin |Wisteria Southern Gastropub inMorganton

“Our menu changes all the time based on ingredients that are available from local farmers, but our mac is the one constant. So many people love it that we keep it on. When we started we had more of a meat-and-three-type menu, and over the past four years we’ve evolved from that. We do a lot of curing and fermenting, and we make all our own bread and pastries. I learned how to make charcuterie, and went to Italy to learn some cooking there, but the menu is rooted in Appalachian cooking and I try to stay true to that.” —Obie Ferguson, Co-Owner/ChefFour-Cheese Macaroni Au Gratin Wisteria Southern Gastropub, MorgantonStart to finish: 30 minutesServes: 43 cups heavy cream½ pound macaroni, cooked al dente 1 cup shredded fontina ½ cup shredded Parmigiano Reggiano 4 slices American cheese 3 cups shredded Cabot extra-sharp white cheddar ½ cup leftover cornbread crumbs (or bread crumbs)Set an oven rack about 4 inches from the broiler, and preheat broiler. In a large sauté pan over medium-high heat, reduce cream by a fourth. Lower heat to medium, and stir in macaroni. And add fontina, Parmigiano Reggiano, American cheese, and 2 cups cheddar. Stir with a wooden spoon while tossing in a sautéing motion. Transfer mixture to an 8-cup baking dish, and distribute cornbread crumbs and remaining cheddar evenly on top.Place under the broiler. Watch it carefully, as you will need to rotate the dish to create an even crust. This will take 3 to 5 minutes, depending on the strength of your broiler. Remove from oven and season with fresh cracked black pepper. Serve immediately.