Seafood Mac & Cheese – Week 45: Paella-style

This week, the “Paella-style” theme had me looking into the origins of this dish. Initially paella was a popular dish whose recipe varied according to the local and seasonal ingredients available. It gets its name from the pan in which it is cooked. In my eyes, it represents the abundance and freshness of the harvest season, so I decided to make a paella-style Mac & Cheese bursting with flavour.

The combination of seasonal vegetables, chicken, and seafood in this terrific dish is very festive.

This Mac & Cheese features risoni in a creamy sauce with Manchego cheese, grilled chicken, chorizo sausage, shrimp, and mussels. It’s my nod to the traditional Valencian dish.


  1. Preheat oven to 400°F (200°C).
  2. Place tomatoes on a baking sheet. Garnish with lemon zest, season with salt and pepper, and drizzle with olive oil.
  3. Bake for about 15 minutes or until they’re tender and start to turn golden. Remove from the oven.

  4. In a saucepan, melt butter and soften onion and garlic. Add flour and stir for 1 minute, making sure the flour doesn’t brown.
  5. Add milk and cream, beating with a whisk until smooth. Simmer for 15 minutes, stirring regularly until sauce thickens.
  6. Stir in the cheese, then the pasta. Pour into a baking dish and top with the remaining ingredients and herbs. Add a little more cheese when ready to serve.

Johanne Depelteau

Longueuil, Quebec

Johanne, a passionate lover of the culinary arts, has been working in television broadcasting, publishing, magazine writing and advertising for many years.

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