Lindy’s Favorite Macaroni and Cheese

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Lindy's Favorite Mac n Cheese

 

Mac n Cheese, it’s all about the cheese – and how you make it. 

Cheesy deliciousness!  That’s what I want in my mac n cheese.  And a little crunch.  Is that asking too much?

I don’t think so.

It seems, however, when I make baked macaroni and cheese, it would come out a little dry, curdled and less creamy then I would like.  So when my son came home with a block of Tillamook medium white cheddar cheese,  I set out to find a way to make a creamy, cheesy, crispy, baked macaroni and cheese.

Shouldn’t be too hard right?

 

Cheesy deliciousness

 

First stop, read and research many different recipes and techniques.

Most of them put two or more eggs into the mix, my thinking is, that’s more like egg custard with mac n cheese added; a lot used American or Velveeta cheese to gain creaminess, but then, you lose some interesting cheese flavors, to add mundane cheesiness.

Not what I’m going for at all.  But after much research, I think I’ve got it.

And it’s not hard at all.

One of the tricks was to use less flour in the roux.

The second trick was to undercook the macaroni just slightly and allow them to finish cooking in the sauce in the oven.

The third trick was to lower the oven temperature, to keep everything from curdling.

And finally, the addition of sour cream gave this a creamy texture I was looking for.

Now that’s a good mac n cheese!

Lindy’s Favorite Macaroni and Cheese

Ingredients

  • For the Mac n Cheese

    1/2 pound elbow macaroni cooked for 2 minutes LESS than the package directions (you want to have a really al dente macaroni as it will cook more in the oven)
  • 4 tablespoons butter
  • 3 tablespoons flour (less flour makes for a looser roux)
  • 2 cups milk
  • 1 teaspoon dry mustard
  • Salt and pepper, to taste
  • 1 pound grated cheese (I used white cheddar, but use what you like. A combo of cheddar and Jarlsburg, or Swiss, or Gruyere …)
  • 1/2 cup sour cream (low-fat OK non-fat is not)
  • For the Crunchy Topping

    2 tablespoons butter
  • 1/2 cup panko

Method

Step 1

Prepare the Mac n Cheese

Butter a 2 quart baking dish.

Heat oven to 325º F.

Cook pasta less 2 minutes from package direction, drain and pour into the casserole dish.

Step 2

While pasta cooks, heat the 4 tablespoons butter in a saucepan over medium heat; add the flour and cook, stirring for about 3 minutes or until you have a light brown roux. Slowly add the milk, stirring constantly until the roux begins to thicken. Add the mustard and a bit of salt and pepper.

Step 3

While continuing to stir, slowly add the cheese (it helps if you grate the cheese in advance and let it sit at room temperature for about an hour); once the cheese is melted, stir in the sour cream. Mix well, then pour over the macaroni (it will seem very soupy, no worries, it will all work out).

Step 4

Prepare the Crunchy Topping

In a sauté pan, melt the remaining butter and add the panko, stir and sauté until panko is lightly browned. Spoon panko over the top of the mac n cheese and put in the oven for about 30 – 35 minutes, or until bubbly. Let sit 5 minutes and serve.

 

LindySez: Served Lindy’s Favorite Macaroni and Cheese with my fav smoked pork chops and steamed broccoli!  Creamy YUMMY deliciousness!


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Recipe Comments

  1. posted by Laurie on June 1, 2014

    I tripled this recipe for my daughters’ graduation party yesterday (at the request of my daughter and others who loved this at my son’s graduation party last year). There was no oven available at the party site, so I cooked the mac and cheese in a large crock pot on the low setting for 3 hours, then turned the setting to warm. It worked out wonderfully! The crunchy topping was to the side in a bowl with a spoon for those who wanted it.

      Reply
    • posted by LindySez on June 1, 2014

      Laurie, I’m so happy to hear this recipe was not only requested, but that it worked so well using your crockpot instead of the oven! And congratulations on the graduation, always a great sense of accomplishment for both parents and students (although I’m sure you had no worries that it was going to happen!).

        Reply

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Nutritional Info

This information is per serving.
  • Calories
    yes
  • Fat
    also yes
  • Carbohydrates
    uh huh
  • Deliciousness
    You betcha!

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