I can honestly say that from the very first time many years ago that I put Cabana in Hillsboro Village‘s Lobster Mac & Cheese in my mouth, that it immediatly raised the bar to universal levels for mac & cheese. Never have I ever tasted something so rich and delicious and full of huge chunks of lobster. If you live in Nashville, you get it, if you don’t you should make a trip for it!! For this month’s “The Breakdown” for Nashville Lifestyles, renowned Chef Brian Uhl, executive chef of Cabana, Sunset Grill and Midtown Cafe invited me into his kitchen to get the skinny (hardly) on how to make this amazing dish.
I think my new “The Breakdown” series has really benfitted me more than anyone. It has been such a great experience getting to learn these dishes under such amazing classically trained and at least locally famous chefs. The skills they show me on food preparation, proper techniques and secret tips and tricks in the kitchen have been truly priceles. It is also so fun to be around such different dynamics in the kitchen of each chef. Chef Brian was very professional and had everything prepped and ready to go when I got there. He has a very classic style of cooking and recipes that make it easy to understand, but still so creative and tasty. When I am in the kitchen with the chefs, it is a continuous scramble between the pen and paper and snapping pictures all the while getting in the middle of the dishes as well, but I really feel really lucky to have the opportunity to learn from Nashville’s best chefs and share the recipes with you. My family can’t really complain either!
Five Facts I learned from Chef Brian about Cabana’s Lobster Mac & Cheese:
- Chef Brian’s nearly world-famous Lobster Mac & Cheese was first born many years ago as a side dish to pan seared scallops at Midtown Café and then later given a hip update and is now a mainstay appetizer on Cabana’s menu.
- Using small pasta such as Ditalini allows “more of everything in each bite”.
- With the sauce you are “basically making an alfredo sauce” that can be developed into many different flavor profiles by adding other herbs and spices such as basil or rosemary.
- While lobster is the shellfish of choice for Chef Brian, “any shellfish can be used if cost or taste differs”.
- By prepping the pasta and country ham ahead of time you can make this dish start to finish in less than 10 minutes.
For this delicious recipe, be sure to visit Nashville Lifestyles and if you are ever in the area, go get some for yourself unless you want to keep your mac & cheese standards low because this stuff is out-of-this-world!!!! Also, stay tuned to High Heels to Hot Wheels for Cabana’s Crab Cake with Aisan Slaw with Mango Dressing! You won’t want to miss that one!