Since I have been in the throws from the visit of my monthly friend I have been craving nothing but Mac and Cheese. I think I have had it 3 times in the last five days and that ranges from the Boxed variety to my delish homemade. I also love to take loved recipes and make them new and fresh, so here are some of my favorites from my favorite chefs.
- 1/2 pound elbow macaroni
- 3 tablespoons butter
- 3 tablespoons flour
- 1 tablespoon powdered mustard
- 3 cups milk
- 1/2 cup yellow onion, finely diced
- 1 bay leaf
- 1/2 teaspoon paprika
- 1 large egg
- 12 ounces sharp cheddar, shredded
- 1 teaspoon kosher salt
- Fresh black pepper
- 3 tablespoons butter
- 1 cup panko bread crumbs
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
In a large pot of boiling, salted water cook the pasta to al dente.
While the pasta is cooking, in a separate pot, melt the butter. Whisk in the flour and mustard and keep it moving for about five minutes. Make sure it's free of lumps. Stir in the milk, onion, bay leaf, and paprika. Simmer for ten minutes and remove the bay leaf.
Temper in the egg. Stir in 3/4 of the cheese. Season with salt and pepper. Fold the macaroni into the mix and pour into a 2-quart casserole dish. Top with remaining cheese.
Melt the butter in a saute pan and toss the bread crumbs to coat. Top the macaroni with the bread crumbs. Bake for 30 minutes. Remove from oven and rest for five minutes before serving.
- 4 ounces thick-sliced bacon
- Vegetable oil
- Kosher salt
- 2 cups elbow macaroni or cavatappi
- 1 1/2 cups milk
- 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
- 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
- 4 ounces Gruyere cheese, grated
- 3 ounces extra-sharp Cheddar, grated
- 2 ounces blue cheese, such as Roquefort, crumbled
- 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
- Pinch nutmeg
- 2 slices white sandwich bread, crusts removed
- 2 tablespoons freshly chopped basil leaves
Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F.
Place a baking rack on a sheet pan and arrange the bacon in 1 layer on the baking rack. Bake for 15 to 20 minutes, until the bacon is crisp. Remove the pan carefully from the oven - there will be hot grease in the pan! Transfer the bacon to a plate lined with paper towels and crumble when it is cool enough to handle.
Drizzle oil into a large pot of boiling salted water. Add the macaroni and cook according to the directions on the package, 6 to 8 minutes. Drain well.
Meanwhile, heat the milk in a small saucepan, but don't boil it. Melt the butter in a medium pot and add the flour. Cook over low heat for 2 minutes, stirring with a whisk. While whisking, add the hot milk and cook for a minute or 2 more, until thickened and smooth. Off the heat, add the Gruyere, Cheddar, blue cheese, 1 teaspoon salt, pepper, and nutmeg. Add the cooked macaroni and crumbled bacon and stir well. Pour into 2 individual size gratin dishes.
Place the bread slices in a food processor fitted with a steel blade and pulse until you have coarse crumbs. Add the basil and pulse to combine. Sprinkle the bread crumb mixture over the top of the pasta. Bake for 35 to 40 minutes, or until the sauce is bubbly and the macaroni is browned on the top.
This version is heaven especially with the Gruyere and BACON! I love Ina's recipes.
- 2 tablespoons unsalted butter, plus extra for baking dish
- 1 clove garlic, minced
- 2 tablespoons finely chopped basil leaves
- 3/4 cup panko bread crumbs
- 1 3/4 cups Parmesan
- 1 pound mini pasta shells
- 2 cups half-and-half
- 16 ounces goat cheese
- 1/2 cup pesto sauce, store-bought or home-made
- 1 1/2 teaspoons kosher salt
- 1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
Butter a 2 quart baking dish. Preheat the broiler and arrange a rack on top.
Melt the remaining 2 tablespoons of butter in a small pan over low heat. In a large bowl add the garlic, basil, panko, and 1/4 cup of the Parmesan. Add the melted butter and toss to combine. Reserve.
Bring a large pot of heavily salted water to a boil over high heat. Add the pasta and cook according to the package instructions. Meanwhile, put the half-and-half in a small pot and bring to a simmer over low heat.Simmer until reduced and slightly thickened, about 5 to 7 minutes.
Reserve 1/4 cup of the pasta cooking water and drain the pasta. Put the pot over low heat and add the half-and-half mixture. When it simmers, add the goat cheese and whisk until smooth. Add in the remaining Parmesan and whisk until melted.
Add the pasta and stir to coat. Stir in the pesto, reserved cooking water, salt, and pepper. Season with additional salt and freshly ground black pepper, if needed.
Pour the pasta mixture into the buttered baking dish and top with the panko mixture. Put under the broiler until the mixture bubbles and the top is browned, about 1 to 2 minutes. Remove from the broiler and let cool for 5 minutes before serving.
I love goat cheese, the sharpness of it is just so yummy.
So go and splurge a little today on some comfort food.