August 6, 2011

Macaroni & Cheese

I mostly just enjoy making treats, but there are a couple of dishes that I like to make, and this is one of them.  I also love to eat this.  it is delicious. 

I got this recipe from my sister-in-law.  She made it for me one night after I had my first baby, and it think it was one of the best things I have ever eaten.  I love pasta anyway, but this cheese to pasta ratio, with a crunchy breadcrumb top is just the best.

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Since then, it has been a special dinner in our family, reserved for birthdays and other occasions.  But my family has grown to love it so much, that it has moved up the ranks and is now in our regular dinner rotation.  My kids don’t even like mac n’ cheese from a box anymore, they always request this.  I can’t say that I blame them.

Macaroni & Cheese

3 Tblsp butter

3 Tblsp flour

2 1/2 C milk (my vote is the fattier the better.  I’ve never used skim, but I’m sure it would be ok)

1 lb. sharp cheddar cheese (I always buy my cheese from Costco, we like the extra sharp)

1/2 lb. colby cheese

1 Tbslp dijon (I use this:DSC_0033. It’s our favorite)

pinch+ of cayenne pepper

salt and pepper to taste (I’ve started using white pepper, I like it.)

1 lb noodles (pick your favorite.  I usually use curly elbows, but we’ve made it with penne as well.)

2 Tblsp butter melted

3/4 C panko bread crumbs

  • Cut the cheese into 1/2” cubes, and start a pot of water to boil for the pasta.
  • Preheat over to 350 and butter a 2 qt baking dish
  • Melt 3 T butter in a pot over med-low heat.
  • Add the flour, turn to med-high heat and cook for two minutes, stirring constantly. 
  • Slowly add the milk, whisking constantly and cook until thickened.
  • At some point during this, add the pasta to the boiling water to cook according to package directions.
  • Add about 2/3 of the cubed cheeses to your sauce, and cook over low heat until cheeses are melted.
  • Stir in dijon, cayenne and s&p.
  • After draining the pasta, stir together pasta, cheese sauce, and remaining cheese cubes in the 2 qt dish.
  • Melt 2 T butter and mix with the panko crumbs.  Sprinkle over top of noodles.
  • Bake uncovered for 30-40 minutes until golden brown on top and bubbling.

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I love that you don’t melt all the cheese cubes into the sauce.  Instead, they all melt while baking, so while you’re eating it, you get extra little pockets of gooey cheese. Yum.

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This dish is also great for reheating, so don’t worry if there are leftovers, it will taste great the next day too!!

1 comment:

JanelWarner said...

My family loved the homemade Mac and Cheese. Thanks.