Fancypants Macaroni And CheeseFrom catbot79 8 years ago
- 2 cups whole wheat elbow macaroni (w.w. penne works well, too) shopping list
- for the croutons: shopping list
- 2 slices bread of your choice (whole wheat and sourdough work well) shopping list
- cooking spray or light "butter" spray shopping list
- 2 tbsp garlic powder shopping list
- 1 1/2 tbsp dried rosemary shopping list
- for the sauce: shopping list
- 4.5 tbsp butter (margarine is ok, too, if that's what you have on hand) shopping list
- 1/2 cup milk (whole, 2 %, or skim, as is your preference) shopping list
- 1 tbsp all-purpose flour to thicken sauce shopping list
- 1 1/2 cups sharp cheddar cheese (the sharper the better) shopping list
- 2 tbsp light cucumber dill Alouette cheese shopping list
- (if you cannot find Alouette, look up "Boursin cheese" recipe) shopping list
- (in a pinch, you could use LIGHT herb/garlic or chive cream cheese) shopping list
- 1 tbsp garlic powder shopping list
- 1 tsp red wine or red wine vinegar (optional but recommended) shopping list
How to make it
- Prepare pasta according to directions on box.
- Now for the croutons: Slice the slices of bread into small pieces. Each slice can make about 16 pieces if you cut 4 sections by 4 sections. Preheat oven to 400 degrees F.
- Arrange bread bits on a cookie sheet and spray them lightly with cooking spray or light "butter" spray (this is so the seasonings can stick better).
- Sprinkle the bread bits evenly with the garlic and rosemary.
- Toast the bread bits on the cookie sheet at 400 degrees F for about 10 minutes; you could toast them a moment longer if you like them more toasted and crispy, but keep an eye on them. When they're done, take 'em out to cool, and set 'em aside.
- Time to make the cheese sauce. Over medium heat in a medium sized saucepan, melt the butter or margarine just enough that there aren't any more lumps of the stuff visible. Do not overheat.
- Stir or whisk in the tablespoon of flour to make a lovely goopy roux. Don't heat this too long either, just enough to make it a paste.
- Add your milk, stirring or whisking it in. (I like whisks, in case there are lumps remaining from the flour.)
- Add your grated cheddar cheese, stirring or whisking it in so that it melts and you get a good saucy consistency to your mixture.
- Now add your Alouette cheese and stir that in until the sauce is creamy and without lumps. If you're using light cream cheese and not Alouette, you might want to add a tbsp of dried dill weed, because it flavors the sauce nicely. Don't forget to stir that in thoroughly and keep the sauce creamy and gooey. This doesn't take too long.
- Stir in 1 tbsp garlic powder and your red wine or vinegar. Keep stirring until the sauce is creamy, and take the saucepan off the burner as soon as creamy consistency has been achieved with all ingredients. It doesn't even need to bubble -- don't overcook the sauce, because burned roux is not what what we want here!
- Preheat oven to 400 degrees F, and lay your cooked pasta in a layer in an oven-friendly baking dish.
- Distribute croutons over pasta layer.
- Pour cheese sauce evenly over pasta and croutons. If you need to, you could mix the pasta and sauce with a fork to make sure everything is evenly coated. The croutons ought to be coated, too.
- Cover the baking dish and put the pasta, croutons, and cheese sauce in to bake at 400 degrees F for 20 minutes.
- After 20 minutes, remove the dish and uncover it. Put in back in without a cover for another 10 to 15 minutes, depending on how baked you like your macaroni and cheese. Keep checking it until you are satisfied with its level of baked-ness.
- A note about toppings: I like topping this stuff with a tbsp or 1 1/2 tbsp of french onion soup mix (with the dried onion bits, mmmm), then sticking it back in with the topping to bake for another 4 or 5 minutes. If you have a few minutes to sauté some diced or chopped onions, these also make fine toppings, as do French fried onions if you like those. Onions in general are a nice touch. I've done sautéd green onions, too, with great results. However, if you don't like onions, you don't have to put any on. Sautéd mushrooms would be good, too. The extra 5 minutes is also optional with the toppings, but highly recommended. If you wanna do a topping, you may want to just bake it uncovered for 10 minutes and not 15.
- Eat. A salad with dark greens (field greens, romaine lettuce, or Spinach) and your favorite vinaigrette are splendid as an accompanying side dish. This can eat like a main course if only 3 servings are taken of it, and if you have a side salad and a soup or dessert. The whole wheat pasta and the cheese are high in protein together!
The Cookcatbot79 Topeka, KS
The Rating2 people
Right up my alley!! yummmmmmmm got my 5shirleyoma in Cove loved it
"Fancy pants"? LMAO Well I never could refuse any mac N cheese and this one is no exception, sounds super and I don't have to taste it to know I will like it. It is pretty LOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOONG though. Still gets my 5. Thanks for posting :)danadooley in Singapore loved it
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