I have a soft spot in my heart for gorgonzola cheese. It makes me chuckle too. All because of my Grandfather Filippo Garrubbo. Born in the USA in 1908, his parents longed for Italy and so returned there just a few years later. Shortly thereafter, his father, older brother, and uncle were killed in a quarry explosion while my grandfather was sent on an errand to buy cigarettes. This tragedy made him into the gentlest of souls. I suppose this is why he felt compelled at age 75 to tell me about what he called his life’s most cruel behavior, some 50 years earlier.
You see, when he eventually returned to America as a teenager, he took a young woman on a date to the movies. He leaned over to kiss her and immediately noticed that her breath was terrible. So bad, in fact, that he excused himself to the bathroom and never returned. “She was such a nice girl,” he told me with his thick accent, “but her breath smelled like a gorgonzola cheese.” And now, some 75 years after that fateful date, I cannot think of gorgonzola cheese — or smell bad breath for that matter — without smiling and thinking of my grandfather.
So in his honor, please enjoy this fragrant dish. And bring breath mints for your guests.
Check out our wine pairings to complement this dish.Print
Sunday Pasta®: Pennone al Gorgonzola
- Total Time: 20 minutes
- Yield: 4-6 1x
- 1/2 cup heavy cream
- 2 tablespoons butter
- 4 ounces fontina, grated or diced
- 4 ounces mascarpone
- 4 ounces grated Parmigiano plus extra for serving
- 4 ounces gorgonzola dolce, diced or crumbled
- 1 pound pennone rigate or click here to purchase
- Salt to taste
- Freshly ground black pepper to taste
- Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil.
- In a large skillet over medium heat, add the butter and heavy cream. When the butter is melted, add the fontina, mascarpone, Parmigiano, and gorgonzola. Stir until melted together.
- Cook the pasta until al dente (about 2 minutes less than the package directions). Drain and add to the sauce. Cook for 1 minute, stirring until pasta is thoroughly coated.
- Serve in warm bowls with grated Parmigiano, salt and pepper to taste.