Sunday, January 20, 2008

Comfort Food Monday - Mac and Cheese

We've been doing some work on the house. It involves heavy lifting, so by the end of the day, we're really hungry.

Alan made this for dinner awhile back. It's hearty, rich and satisfying. One bite, and I was ready to renew my wedding vows - it's just THAT GOOD!

We did agree that the next time he makes it, instead of thickening it with roux (the flour and milk mixture) he'll use cream. While the flour holds up well the first time, it tends to separate on reheating.

Macaroni and Cheese


½ c Sundried Tomatoes, cut into strips
4 T Unsalted Butter
2 med Onions, peeled and chopped
1 c Cauliflower or Broccoli, cut into small pieces
3 T All-Purpose Flour
3-1/2 c Milk
½ t Salt, or to taste
½ t Fresh Ground Pepper
½ lb Penne or Elbow Macaroni
4 oz Provolone Cheese, grated
2 oz Good Quality Parmesan Cheese, finely grated
12 oz Sharp Cheddar Cheese, grated
1 c Leftover Ham, diced
6-8 Sprigs of Fresh Thyme, leaves removed from the stems and stems discarded


Butter an 8” x 8” oven-proof dish and set aside. Pre-heat the oven to 350 degrees.
Place a large skillet over medium heat and cook the onions, tomatoes and cauliflower/broccoli in the butter - with the cover on - until the onions are soft (about 5-7 minutes).
Sprinkle the flour into the pan and cook for two minutes more. Stir in the milk, add the salt and pepper and the thyme. Reduce the heat to low and cook, uncovered, for about ten minutes. Stir occasionally.
Meanwhile, cook the pasta according to the package instructions until almost cooked. Drain and transfer to a large bowl. Add the milk mixture, the ham and all the cheese except for half of the cheddar. Stir well and transfer to the buttered dish.
Cover the dish and bake for 25 minutes. Then remove the cover and sprinkle the remaining cheddar overtop and bake for ten minutes more.
Serve immediately with a salad of mixed greens.

Serves 4-6.


Tijen said...

I love baked pasta! I do it with lots of cheese and spinach, sometimes I add mushrooms too...

Barb McMahon said...


Sub's said...

Damned !!!
We have to try this as soon as possible ^^)

Ho sorry... I forgot to say "Hello" but I'am too hungry now...

Barb McMahon said...

no no, I completely understand!

Valerie Devin said...

It is always a lot of fun to read all your blogs, and see how well you are doing. Emma made beautiful Mac and cheese last night for us also....
Yum it was delicious specially on my first "second" night off ever!!

Lots of love to you both

margaret atkinson said...!!!!!!! i'm SO making this! thank you!

Barb McMahon said...

It does seem to be a popular recipe...

And Valerie - two nights off in a row?!! Amazing!