I mentioned last week how we had some visitors here and I made some new dishes.....remember that? The first one I posted was the cinnamon rolls we had for breakfast the morning that they left. Now let me show you one of our dinner items. It was a hit, even if I do say so myself. Not that I had much to do with the recipe, but I did have to make it so that should count for something.
As you are aware (if you've been following my blog) I have a slight addiction to macaroni and cheese. I have for as long as I can remember. I grew up on the Kraft blue box kind and moved onto Stouffer's and now I make my own.
Imagine my shock when I realized that my little girl (who also loves macaroni and cheese) doesn't like my homemade versions. I shouldn't say she doesn't like all of them. She's tried every single one but usually doesn't gobble them down like I'm hoping she will. The simpler the better for her. Anyway, I was happy (and surprised) that she actually ate this one. Surprised because it has Gruyere cheese in it which I thought for sure would seal the deal. Happily she ate it and she's had leftovers too.
Here is what I love about this recipe. The flavors are so well combined that you don't really taste any one thing that stands out and you can identify distinctly. The Gruyere gives it a nice nuttiness, the cheddar has the wonderful sharpness, the nutmeg and cayenne don't stand out but you know if they weren't in there it would make the sauce completely different. Best yet is that the sauce is abundant enough that when you pull it out of the oven it's not one solid clump of pasta that holds it's shape. It oozes nicely.
I should also mention that this link below goes on to describe how they got this recipe from Martha Stewart.....so there you have it. Enjoy!
NY Times Macaroni and Cheese
Recipe from N.Y. Times
- 6 slices white bread, crusts removed, cut into 1/4 inch pieces
- 8 Tbsp (1 stick) unsalted butter, plus more for the dish
- 5 1/2 cups milk
- 1/2 cup all-purpose flour
- 2 tsp kosher salt
- 1/4 tsp nutmeg
- 1/4 tsp black pepper
- 1/4 tsp cayenne pepper
- 4 1/2 cups (18 ounces) sharp cheddar, grated
- 2 cups (8 ounces) Gruyere cheese, grated
- 1 pound elbow macaroni
- Preheat oven to 375 degrees
- Butter a 3 quart casserole pan, I used a 9x13 inch pan.
- In a small bowl, place the cut up bread. In a saucepan or in a microwave, melt 2 Tbsp butter and then pour it over the bread and stir it around until all the pieces are coated. Set aside.
- In a medium saucepan heat the milk over medium low heat. Do not boil.
- In a large high sided skillet or a large pot, melt the remaining 6 Tbsp butter over medium heat. When the butter has melted and is bubbly add the flour. Whisk together for a minute. Add the warm milk and whisk to get a smooth consistency. Continue whisking until the mixture is thick and smooth.
- Remove the pan from the heat and stir in the salt, black pepper, cayenne pepper and nutmeg. Add 3 cups of cheddar and 1 1/2 cups Gruyere and stir until smooth. Set aside.
- In a large pot heat some water to a boil and add the macaroni. Under cook the pasta by about 3 or 4 minutes so that the outside is soft but the inside still has some bite to it. Rise the macaroni under cold water in a colander. Add the macaroni to the cheese sauce and stir well.
- Pour the macaroni and cheese mixture into the prepared dish. Use the remaining 1 1/2 cups cheddar and 1/2 cup Gruyere and sprinkle over the top of the macaroni and cheese sauce. Scatter the bread crumbs over the top of the shredded cheeses and bake for about 30 minutes or until the bread crumbs are golden brown.
- Cool for 5 minutes before serving.