Mac and Cheese was the day of babysitters and no chocolate before bed. It was the day of playing kick-the-can with the neighbors while the sun set. Mac and Cheese marks the time in my life when everything was simple because it didn’t have to be complicated.
Baked Mac and Cheese really doesn’t take much effort. All you do is boil noodles in salted water for 5-8 minutes (until noodles are done. If they’re gummy, they’ve been in too long.) Strain, add olive oil, stir and set aside. Chop and saute an onion, then stir into the noodles.
Then put 2 tablespoons of flour and 2 tablespoons of butter on the stove and whisk for about 3 minutes. Add the rest of your spices and the milk. Stir until thickened (about 12 minutes) then add your cheese.
Place noodles in a baking dish and pour the melted cheese mixture over it.
Now just make a cup of bread crumbs and mix them with 2 tablespoons of melted butter. Sprinkle over the top and bake in a 350F oven for 30 minutes. Done!
Enjoy! * If you’re doing this with kids or picky friends (eh-hem!) you may want to use only half an onion. While it really adds taste and flavor, it is strong for people who don’t have the acquired taste.
Homemade Baked Mac and Cheese
Adapted from ‘I Found Happy- Food and Life Ramblings’
8 oz. elbow macaroni, cooked until just tender in salted water
2 tbsp butter
2 tbsp flour
2 cups milk
1 onion, chopped
1/8 tsp cayenne pepper
1/8 tsp nutmeg
1/4 tsp paprika
1 1/2 cups mixed cheddar and mozzarella cheese
3/4 cup parmesan cheese
salt and pepper to taste
2 tbsp butter
1 cup dry breadcrumbs
Mix butter and breadcrumbs, set aside. (If you don’t have breadcrumbs, you can easily foodprocess white bread without the crusts until it’s a crumbly-looking mixture.)
Boil water, and salt it. Add noodles and boil for about 5-8 minutes or until noodles are not crunchy but are not gummy. Drain, pour back into bowl, add a few tablespoons of olive oil, stir. Set aside.
Saute a chopped onion with salt to taste and white wine then stir into the noodles. Pour into a casserole dish or a baking dish. Set aside.
In a pan over medium heat melt the butter and add the flour. Whisk this for 3 minutes. (Preheat oven to 350F now) Then add milk and spices and continue to stir while it thickens for 12-15 minutes. Add cheese. Stir until melted (add salt and pepper to taste here) then pour over noodles.
Sprinkle the bread crumbs over the noodles. Bake for 30 minutes.