Mac & Cheese

Recipe #2 of the day…

I’m always looking for a good mac & cheese recipe…not something to replace the trusty blue box, but something just, I don’t know, a little more homemade, ya know? I’ve tried a couple over the years that are pretty blah, so this one looked interesting and I gave it a try on Friday night. Here’s how I made it:

3/4 cup dry bread crumbs
2 tablespoons melted butter
8 ounces macaroni (I used Ronzoni SmartTaste)
2 tablespoons butter
1 small onion, minced
1 tablespoon all-purpose flour
salt and pepper to taste
1/4 teaspoon dry mustard
1 1/2 cups milk
1 cup shredded Cheddar cheese (next time, I’ll use sharp for more flavor)
1 cup shredded American cheese

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Grease a 2 quart casserole dish. Place the bread crumbs into a small bowl and mix well with the melted butter; set aside.
2. Bring a large pot of lightly salted water to a boil (I generally don’t salt food while cooking, but I do salt the pasta water a bit – it makes a difference!). Add macaroni and cook for 8 to 10 minutes or until al dente; drain, then place into prepared casserole dish.
3. While the pasta is cooking, melt 2 tablespoons butter in a saucepan (I actually used a skillet and it worked fine for the next step, too) over medium heat. Stir in the minced onion and cook until the onion softens and turns translucent, about 5 minutes.
4. Stir in the flour, pepper, salt, and dry mustard until incorporated, then pour in the milk and bring to a simmer. Simmer, stirring constantly until the milk has thickened, about 7-10 minutes. Take the milk off of the heat and stir in the cheese until melted. Pour cheese sauce over the macaroni, then sprinkle evenly with buttered bread crumbs.
5. Bake until the top is golden and bubbly, about 20 minutes.

*I think that the breadcrumbs are good, but probably not really necessary, so that would eliminate some of the calories.

The boys were kinda of “eh” on this one.

2 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. sara
    Aug 10, 2009 @ 08:52:26

    This is the recipe that I ALWAYS use. But I use all cheddar. Or maybe a little colby in there.

    And my opinion is that the breadcrumbs are the best part!


  2. Nicole
    Aug 10, 2009 @ 09:03:58

    I would have used all cheddar, except that I had some shredded American cheese in the freezer from the last time I made mac & cheese, and I wanted to use it up! It made it a little creamier than I think it would have been with all cheddar, so I’ll probably keep making it this way. I did see that some people have thrown in some grated Romano/parmesan, too, and that would probably be really good…


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