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    Baked Macaroni and Cheese

    Baked Macaroni and Cheese



    Baked Macaroni and Cheese-wpid-img_20131211_0544334-jpg

    Baked Macaroni and Cheese

    Ingredients


    1 pound elbow macaroni

    Cheese Sauce:
    1 cup half and half
    1/2 cup heavy cream
    1 bay leaf
    3 tablespoons butter, divided
    1/4 cup flour
    1/8 teaspoon (or more) Cajun seasoning
    1/2 tablespoons dry mustard
    1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
    16 ounces grated cheese blend
    salt
    freshly ground black pepper

    Topping:
    2 cups panko breadcrumbs
    2 ounces Parmesan cheese, grated
    2 tablespoons butter, melted


    Instructions


    Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. Grease a 9 x 11-inch casserole with butter.

    Cook macaroni in boiling, salted water until al dente, according to package directions. Drain and set aside.

    In a small saucepan, heat half and half, cream, and bay leaf over medium heat just until little bubbles form around the edges. This is called scalding. Remove bay leaf and turn off the heat.

    In a larger saucepan melt the butter over medium low heat. Stir in the flour to form a roux. Stir in the Cajun seasoning, dry mustard, and Worcestershire. Cook an additional 5 to 10 minutes, stirring occasionally to prevent sticking and browning, until the roux is quite smooth and elastic.

    Slowly stir in the scalded cream, stirring vigorously (can use a whisk, but I just use a wooden spoon) to work out any lumps. Remove from heat and stir in the cheese. Season with salt and pepper if desired. I think it is salty enough, but I eat lower-salt most of the time. Gently fold in the drained macaroni.

    Spread the macaroni mixture out into the prepare casserole.

    Combine breadcrumbs, Parmesan, and butter. Sprinkle over the casserole. I usually just spread it around the outer edge and leave the middle nekkid. I once had some really good mac 創 cheese catered from a deli across from the hospital where I worked and that was how they did it. I think that is why it tasted so good.

    Bake for 15 minutes or so. I like mine sort of lightly colored, not too dark.
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    Re: Baked Macaroni and Cheese

    Baked Macaroni and Cheese



    Sounds great! Do you have a particular dry pasta you recommend? The elbow Mac I've gotten in the past is too thin and my dish turns into mush! Looking for a nice thick and hearty elbow pasta.


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    What's For Dinner?

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