Wednesday, April 16, 2003

For those who collect mac and cheese recipes

This recipe by Marian Burros is from a CSMonitor article, "Comfort food still on front burner," written by Seth Stern.
Macaroni and Cheese

1 cup diced onion
2 tablespoons unsalted butter
2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
2 cups low-fat milk
1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
10 ounces extra-sharp aged white Cheddar, grated, plus 2 ounces, grated
Salt and freshly ground white pepper to taste
1/8 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1/4 to 1/2 teaspoon hot pepper sauce
8 ounces corkscrew-shaped pasta (Burros suggests cavatappi)
2 tablespoons grated Parmigiano-Reggiano

In a large saucepan, cook the onion in the butter over low heat until it is soft but not browned, 5 to 7 minutes. Stir in the flour. Remove from the heat and whisk in the milk until thoroughly blended. Return to medium heat and cook, stirring, until the mixture begins to thicken. Remove from the heat and stir in the mustard, the 10 ounces of Cheddar, salt, pepper, nutmeg, and hot pepper sauce.

Meanwhile, cook the pasta according to package directions until just al dente. Drain but do not rinse. Stir immediately into the prepared cheese sauce until well blended. Adjust the seasonings. Spoon the mixture into a 9-by-13-inch baking dish. Top with the remaining 2 ounces of Cheddar and the Parmigiano-Reggiano. Place the rack in the bottom third of an oven that has been preheated to 400 degrees F. Bake for about 30 minutes, until the mixture is hot, bubbling throughout, and golden.

Makes 3 to 4 servings as a main dish or 6 servings as a side dish.

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