Thursday, January 29, 2009

Baked Mac and Cheese

But no ordinary mac and cheese. This one is yummy with a crunchy bread crumb and cheese top. Now, before I post the recipe I know #90 in my 100 things list says I am a horrible cook. I am, but I know how to follow a recipe, and this is from my lovely, (very good cook) friend Sarah. She made up a huge casserole dish of this for her daughter's 5th birthday party and added pureed cauliflower to the sauce. Nobody could tell, not even me and all the kids gobbled it up.

This recipe makes enough for a 9x13 casserole dish, or 8-10 servings. I cut it in half and have enough for lunch the next day.

4 tbls butter

4 tbls flour

2 cups milk, or half and half

3/4 tsp salt

1/4 tsp pepper

1 tsp nutmeg

2 cups cheddar or colby cheese, grated

2 cups grated parmesan

1 cup mozzarella or gruyere cheese, reserve 1/4 cup of mixed cheese

1 lb elbow noodles, cooked al dente

1/4 cup italian style bread crumbs

Preheat oven to 350 F. Melt butter in a sucepan. Add flour. Stir together until smooth and there is no lumps. Add milk slowly. Cook until thickened, stirring frequently about 5-7 minutes. Remove from heat. Add seasonings to sauce and then add cheeses. Stir until sauce is smooth and combined. Grease casserole dish with butter. Stir your bechamel (cheese sauce) sauce into the noodles. Pour into casserole dish. Place 1/4 cup of cheese on top, and sprinkle the bread crumbs over top. Bake 30-45 minutes until bubbly and brown. Let stand 5-10 minutes.


sehembrook said... I strive for my blog to be like yours...geesh! You are good!! I love it...and now, I can officially say I am "stalking" YOUR blog!! :)

susan said...

ok, can i omit the nutmeg?? do you taste it? i hate it when they put nutmeg in savory dishes, but i LURVE baked mac and cheese

susan said...

ok, i have a big ole pan of it in the oven right now, so i will let you know how it goes.
i used a pkg of sharp cheddar, and a pkg of mozz and parm. each were two cups. i even left out about 1/4 for the top but it seemed so cheesy i didnt add it to the top. i also used a long pan instead of a round casserole, so i sprinkled it with about a 1/2 c. of breadcrumbs.

susan said...

oh, i was going to ask, how much pureed cauliflower did your friend add? i think that would taste nummy. have you ever had a cauliflower gratin? same thing as this mac and cheese, but with cauliflower

Beth said...

yes you can omit the nutmeg. traditionally bechamel sauce has fresh grated nutmeg in it. when I was in school I made up 5 gallons of bechamel sauce and grated a half of a nutmeg, so that was only maybe 2 teaspoons? go sparinlgy if you do use it.

As for cauliflower, I would think if you buy one head, and cook it down and puree it, that probably would do for a full recipe. or only puree half the head of cauliflower and mix it in and see how it taste. let me know if you try it!

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