Jan 14, 2010

Macaroni and Cheese

Homemade macaroni and cheese was always something I wanted to make - but my husband has always told me that he didn't like macaroni and cheese (I know!).  Well a few weeks ago - he says to me, "I like macaroni and cheese - just not the kind from the box - I like the homemade kind".    So I made this recipe as my test of that statement, which proved to be true.  And let me add - he was asking if there was more of this after it was all gone in the fridge. 
I didn't have to look far for a recipe - since the Pioneer Woman's recipe has gotten so many rave reviews - I just kept to this basic recipe.  Definitely a keeper - it was actually gone so fast - I almost didn't get a photo of it.  We had it with friends one night and for lunch with my family the next day.  I'm looking forward to making it again very soon!   
  • 4 cups Dried Macaroni (one 16 oz. box)
  • 4 Tbsp. Butter
  • 1/4 cup All-purpose Flour
  • 2 1/2 cups Whole Milk
  • 2 heaping teaspoons Dry Mustard
  • 1 whole Egg Beaten
  • 1 pound Cheddar Cheese, Grated
  • 1/2 tsp. Salt
  • 1/2 tsp. Seasoned Salt
  • 1/2 tsp. pepper
  • Optional Spices: Cayenne Pepper, Paprika, Thyme (I added as dash of cayenne)
1. Cook macaroni until very firm (I cooked mine for 5 minutes). Macaroni should be too firm to eat right out of the pot. Drain.
2. In a small bowl, beat egg.
3. In a large pot, melt butter and sprinkle in flour. Whisk together over medium-low heat. Cook mixture for five minutes, whisking constantly. Don’t let it burn.
4. Pour in milk, add mustard, and whisk until smooth. Cook for five minutes until very thick. Reduce heat to low.
5. Take 1/4 cup of the sauce and slowly pour it into beaten egg, whisking constantly to avoid cooking eggs. Whisk together till smooth.
6. Pour egg mixture into sauce, whisking constantly. Stir until smooth.
7. Add in cheese (keep 1/2 cup out to add on top) and stir to melt.
8. Add salts and pepper. Taste sauce and add more salt and seasoned salt as needed!

9. Pour in drained, cooked macaroni and stir to combine.
10. Serve immediately (very creamy) or pour into a buttered baking dish, top with extra cheese, and bake for 20 to 25 minutes or until bubbly and golden on top.

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