Macaroni and Cheese

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by: Pat Man Kitchen






Everyone loves macaroni and cheese, especially adults, who are surprised to find that it tastes nothing like the stuff they fix for their kids. There are no tricks or exotic elements in this recipe (although I do love including fresh mozzarella for its stretchy strings of warm cheese). Just bake it in a big, gorgeous casserole until it’s all crusty and golden. You can set the whole thing up well ahead of time, then bake it when you're ready. Macaroni and cheese makes an easy and enormously satisfying weeknight winter supper for company or family, served with tomato soup and a salad of slivered endive and watercress. In warm weather, I go for a big tossed salad studded with tomatoes, artichoke hearts, chickpeas, and other goodies. A fruit condiment, such as sweet-and-sour quinces with dried fruit or apple-pear chutney, nicely complements the cheese. To drink, have a medium-bodied, fruit-forward Zinfandel, such as Sonoma's Seghesio.




ingredients

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serves: 5

3 cups milk

1 pound elbow macaroni

3 tablespoons butter

3 tablespoons flour

sea salt and freshly ground pepper

1 1/2 cups grated cheeses: a sharp, aged Cheddar, aged Gruyere, and/or Emmenthal

1-2 rounds fresh mozzarella cheese, halved and sliced (optional)

1 cup fresh bread crumbs

aromatics:

1 slice onion

1 leaf bay

1 clove garlic

1 small pinch of thyme

Nutrition Facts
Macaroni and Cheese

Servings Per Recipe: 5

Amount per Serving

Calories: 925

  • Total Fat: 38.1 g
  •     Saturated Fat: 23 g
  •     Trans Fat: 0.3 g
  • Cholesterol: 112.9 mg
  • Sodium: 485.5 mg
  • Total Carbs: 97.6 g
  •     Dietary Fiber: 4.4 g
  •     Sugars: 11.6 g
  • Protein: 46.4 g
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preparation

1.  Rub a 9- by 12-inch casserole with butter. Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil for the macaroni. Preheat the oven to 350°F whenever you’re ready to bake. Heat the milk with the aromatics until it bubbles around the edge, then turn off the heat and let it steep for at least 10 minutes.

2.  Cook the macaroni in the boiling salted water until al dente and then drain. Rinse with cold water to stop the cooking.

3.  Melt the butter in a 3-quart saucepan. Stir in the flour, then pour the hot milk through a strainer all at once into the roux. Whisk briskly until the sauce is thickened, then cook over low heat for 5 minutes, stirring constantly. Season with 1/2 teaspoon salt and some pepper.

4.  Put the macaroni in the baking dish, then pour over the sauce and add the cheese(s). Mix together, even the surface, cover with bread crumbs, and wipe down the sides of the dish. Bake, uncovered, until bubbling throughout and golden on top, 25 to 35 minutes.

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