Wednesday, February 12, 2014

Three-Cheese Mac and Cheese

Three-Cheese Mac and Cheese
Serves 8

1 pound elbow macaroni
8 tablespoons butter, divided
6 tablespoons all-purpose flour
3 cups milk
1 cup heavy cream
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
¼ teaspoon freshly ground nutmeg
1 pound white Cheddar, shredded
4 ounces Asiago, shredded
4 ounces Romano, shredded
1 ½ cups panko breadcrumbs

  1. In 7- or 8-quart pot filled with 5 quarts boiling salted water, cook macaroni until barely al dente, about 8 minutes. Drain. Set aside.

  1. In same pan dried, melt 6 tablespoons butter.

  1. Sprinkle flour over butter and cook 2 to 3 minutes on medium heat, whisking to form roux.

  1. Add cold milk gradually, whisking vigorously until white sauce is smooth.

  1. Cook sauce on medium-low heat until thick and bubbly, whisking occasionally.

  1. Whisk in cream, salt, pepper, and nutmeg.

  1. Stir in Cheddar, Asiago, and Romano. Cook over medium heat until cheeses are fully melted, stirring occasionally with wooden spoon.

  1. Stir in cooked and drained macaroni.

  1. Place in lightly buttered 13x9-inch baking dish.

10.  In 1-quart saucepan over the stove or in 1-quart bowl in microwave, melt remaining 2 tablespoons butter.

11.  Add breadcrumbs to melted butter and mix well to make topping.

12.  Sprinkle topping over macaroni and cheese.

13.  Bake in 325°F oven for about 15 minutes.

14.  Then place pan under broiler until breadcrumbs turn golden brown.

NOTE: Experiment adding some depth to this recipe by taking half a peeled onion and sticking a few cloves of garlic and a bay leaf in natural or knife-made slits in onion. Add this onion to the white sauce between steps 4 and 5 and then remove it before adding the cream, between steps 5 and 6. Discard onion.

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