Macaroni and Cheese

Today, I posted a video of my sizzling homemade macaroni and cheese fresh out of the oven and was immediately asked for the recipe by several people.

 

In this quick post, I will give you the recipe for a creamy and decadent macaroni and cheese topped with a crispy breadcrumb topping. Enjoy this now and far into the winter months.

INGREDIENTS:

CHEESE SAUCE:
  • 6 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 6 tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • 2 cups milk
  • 2 tablespoon garlic powder
  • 2 tablespoons powdered mustard
  • 1 teaspoon paprika
  • 1 8-ounce block cheddar cheese (shredded)
  • 1 250 g chunk of parmesan reggiano cheese (grated)*
  • Salt and black pepper to taste
BREADCRUMB TOPPING:
  • 1/2 cup Panko breadcrumbs
  • 1/2 cup freshly parsley (finely chopped)
  • 1/2 cup grated parmesan cheese
  • 1 pound box of dried elbow macaroni pasta

*I prefer to use fresh parmesan in this recipe, but the containers found in the aisles at the grocery store will do as well.

INSTRUCTIONS:

CHEESE SAUCE PREPARATION:
  1. Heat butter in sauce pan. Cook for about five minutes on medium, making sure to stir, until the milk fats have cooked off. The butter should look really clear and have no white coloured solids floating around.
  2. Whisk in the flour. Allow to cook for about five minutes, stirring every minute. You want the flour to toast and brown slightly. It should smell delicious. Toasting flour is one of my favourite smells in the kitchen.
  3. Whisk in milk. Make sure to stir throughly and no lumps of flour remain.
  4. Allow béchamel sauce to cook (approximately 10 minutes). Stirring every minute or so to ensure the sauce does not get lumpy. Midway through the cooking of the béchamel sauce, you will want to begin boiling your pasta.
  5. Add garlic powder, paprika, and mustard powder.
  6. Once sauce comes to a boil, turn the heat down to medium low.
  7. Whisk in all the grated Cheddar cheese and Parmesan cheese (reserve 1/2 cup grated Parmesan for crumb topping). Stir until smooth.
  8. Add salt and pepper to taste.
  9. Turn sauce down to low once all cheese is incorporated. You can keep the sauce on low until your pasta is ready to add.
  10. Once pasta is ready, mix in pasta with cheese sauce. You will use all the pasta and cheese sauce. Pour the macaroni and cheese mixture into a 9 inch by 9 inch baking dish.
img_6836
Macaroni and cheese prior to breadcrumb topping.
BREADCRUMB TOPPING PREPARATION:
  1. Preheat oven to 450°F.
  2. Finely chopped fresh parsley.
  3. In a small bowl, mix parsley with breadcrumbs and reserved Parmesan cheese.
  4. Sprinkle over macaroni and cheese in baking dish. Make sure to evenly coat the surface.
  5. Once oven is to temperature, bake pasta dish for 15 minutes. It is important you keep an eye on it though since all ovens are a little different. If your oven is very hot, it may take less time to bake. You are aiming for a golden brown and crunchy topping.
img_6845
Golden brown and delicious!
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