Did anybody catch the article on Yahoo about perfect mac and cheese? After reading it I decided to try it. It was amazing! Savannah thought there wasn’t enough pasta. I later figured out why…the cheese sauce recipe makes 4 cups and the mac and cheese recipe only calls for 2 cups of the sauce. I accidentally used all 4 cups 🙁 It was still delicious. Actually, it may have even helped with the leftovers. When reheated it wasn’t dry like lots of leftovers. (Gotta make my mistakes sound like good ideas, right?!?)
The recipe is from Beecher’s and here are their tips:
1. They suggest Beecher’s cheese, but I didn’t have access, so I used Kraft (not very many options at my store). Either way, they recommended using a good quality cheese
2. Top-quality butter
3. Penne instead of elbow macaroni because it “sucks up the cheese better”.
4. Undercooking the pasta (cooking about 2 minutes less than the package instructions). It will finish cooking in the sauce in the oven.
5. The proportion of pasta to cheese sauce, it will look like a lot of sauce for the pasta, but some of the liquid will be absorbed.
6. I didn’t use the chipotle chili powder because I don’t have any, but they said, “…gives it that slight bit of heat that’s barely tangible in each bite but essential to the overall taste.”
Macaroni and Cheese
- 3¼ c. penne pasta
- 2 c. cheese sauce (recipe follows)
- 1 oz. (1/4 c.) Cheddar cheese, grated
- 1 oz. (1/4 c.) Jack cheese, grated
- ¼ - ½ tsp. chipotle chili powder, optional
- Cheese Sauce ingredients:
- ¼ c. unsalted butter
- ⅓ c. all-purpose flour
- 3 c. milk
- 14 oz. Cheddar cheese, grated (about 3½ c.)
- 2 oz. Jack cheese, grated (1/2 c.) (I used Monterey Jack)
- ½ tsp. kosher salt
- ¼ - ½ tsp. chipotle chili powder
- ⅛ tsp. garlic powder
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees
- Cook the penne for 2 minutes less than package directions.
- Combine the cooked pasta and cheese sauce in a medium bowl. Scrape into an 8-inch baking dish. Sprinkle the top with cheese, then chipotle powder.
- Bake, uncovered, for 20 minutes. Let sit for 5 minutes before serving.
- Cheese Sauce Directions:
- Melt the butter in a heavy bottomed saucepan over medium heat and whisk in the flour. Continue whisking and cook for 2 minutes.
- Slowly add the milk, whisking constantly. Cook until the sauce thickens, about 10 minutes, stirring frequently. Remove from heat.
- Add the cheese, salt, chili powder and garlic powder. Stir until cheese is melted and all of the ingredients are incorporated, about 3 minutes. Use immediately or refrigerate for up to 3 days.
- Makes 4 cups
This sauce reheat nicely on the stove in a saucepan over low heat. Stir frequently so the sauce doesn't scorch.