Macaroni and Cheese
1.5 tsp salt
2 cups dry macaroni
2.5 cups grated cheese (we use a mix of old cheddar and mozzarella, sometimes with camembert mixed in, or honestly whatever leftover cheese we have in the fridge. Chevre, unfortunately, isn't great)
2 tbsp butter
2 tbsp flour
1/4 cup cream (15% and up works great)
1 3/4 cup skim milk
1 onion, minced
1 bay leaf
1/4 tsp paprika
1 tbsp butter
1/2 cup breadcrumbs
(alternatively to the cream and milk you could use whole milk or any other combination that works with what you have available and how low-fat you want the mac'n'cheese to be - I've used all skim milk as well as a full 1/2 cup of very heavy cream and both turn out ok. Just make the total 2 cups.)
- preheat oven to 350
- boil macaroni in salted water until just tender. Drain.
- melt 2 tbsp butter in large saucepan over med heat. Add flour, mixing in well, and let cook for about 5 min.
- add in milk and cream combo, followed by onion, bay leaf, and paprika
- simmer 15 min
- stir in 3/4 of the cheese
- stir in the macaroni
- pour into a casserole dish (remove bay leaf if you can). Sprinkle with remaining cheese.
- melt 1 tbsp butter and mix with breadcumbs. Sprinkle over the top of casserole.
- bake until bread crumbs are lightly browned, about 30 min. Let stand 5 min before eating.
I should note that we generally only eat small portions of this rich dish, usually with a big helping of greens like steamed broccoli or kale on the side. But I'm sure everyone reading this knows that.
This recipe makes about 8 portions the way we eat it. Leftovers last in the fridge for a couple of days. You can also prepare ahead of time and do the final bake when ready to eat. A great casserole to leave with a friend in need.