This is truly a decadent and delicious mac and cheese dish. Hubby found the recipe after searching through several cook books and cooking sites. Truth be told, I love his enthusiasm in the kitchen. He is always very adventurous and his palate is ever-increasing. He is my taste-tester, ingredients-buyer, sous chef, and number one fan. ;-)
When we were newly weds, we would often buy boxed mac and cheese for quick side dishes. We still buy them now, although less frequently because we love to experiment nowadays with whatever we have in the pantry.
Hubby was very eager and excited when we were making this dish. And for a good reason - the original recipe was from chef Joe Randall, who is one of the top chefs in Savannah, GA and also has his own cooking school! We tweaked the recipe a bit, to use the ingredients we have, and it was sooo good that hubby almost ate all of it in one sitting.
What you need:
1 cup elbow macaroni
1 cup evaporated milk
1 1/4 cup grated cheddar cheese
1/4 cup grated smoked gruyere cheese
1/2 cup breadcrumbs
1/4 cup butter, melted (divided)
1 tablespoon Parmesan cheese
1/2 teaspoon salt
pinch of paprika
pinch of cayenne pepper
What to do:
Preheat oven to 350°F.
Cook macaroni according to package instructions. Drain and rinse with cold water, then set aside.
In a large bowl, beat the egg with milk, 2 tablespoons melted butter, salt and cayenne pepper. In a separate bowl, combine grated cheddar and gruyere cheese.
Place half the cooked macaroni in a buttered casserole dish and top with half the grated cheese. Repeat this procedure with the remaining macaroni and cheese mixture. Pour the egg mixture over the macaroni and cheese.
In a small bowl, mix breadcrumbs with paprika, remaining butter and Parmesan. Sprinkle over mac and cheese. Bake until brown and bubbly, about 40 to 45 minutes.
Tips, Tricks and Tweaks:
1. Gruyere or any other cheese like smoked applewood, gouda, etc. will be good for this recipe.
2. Halve the bread crumbs mixture if you don't like crust on your mac and cheese (it is delicious, though!)
3. Be creative with your pasta! You can use gemeli, farfalle, shells - any kind of pasta that would be good in "holding sauce."
4. A bit of crumbled bacon on top would do this dish wonders! (Everything's good with bacon, right?)