‘Tis the season for comfort food galore, and what better than Macaroni and Cheese. It is probably one of my top 10 favorite foods of all time. Here is a recipe that ditches the blue box for an all together simple homemade Macaroni and Cheese without the hassle of pre-boiling the noodles.
1 stick butter, divided
1/4 cup flour
3 cups whole milk
3 cups water
1 tbs salt
1/2 tsp black pepper
1 lb elbow macaroni
1 1/2 cup shredded sharp cheddar, divided
1/2 cup bleu cheese
3 garlic cloves, chopped
1 cup panko breadcrumbs
3 tbs chopped chives
If the idea of putting bleu cheese in your macaroni and cheese is frightening, you’ll have to trust me. I myself don’t even like bleu cheese, but I think for this dish it adds a whole unexpected depth of flavor. Give it a try!
Begin by melting 1/2 a stick of butter in a saucepan. Whisk in the flour and cook for a minute, whisking constantly. Slowly whisk in the milk and water.
Bring to a boil and then reduce to a simmer, whisking occasionally. Be careful as the milk boils up quite a bit.
When a thin glossy sauce forms, after about 10 minutes, stir in salt and pepper and remove from heat.
In a 13×9 baking dish, mix together the uncooked pasta, bleu cheese and 1 cup of the sharp cheddar cheese.
Pour the sauce over the pasta and Do Not Stir!! Otherwise the cheese will melt and clump unevenly.
Cover the dish with tin foil and bake at 400 for 20 minutes. Meanwhile, melt remaining 1/2 stick of butter in a skillet. Add the garlic, panko crumbs, and chives, and toss until toasted. Season with salt and pepper.
Once the 20 minutes are up, remove the tin foil and top with the remaining 1/2 cup sharp cheddar cheese, and then with the panko mixture.
Bake uncovered for 10 more minutes, or until the pasta is tender, edges are bubbling and the top is golden brown. Let it sit for 10 more minutes before serving.