Saturday, May 9, 2009

Pioneer Woman's Macaroni & Cheese

I am a firm believer that one can never go wrong with the concept of pasta and melted cheese. So when I saw Pioneer Woman's Macaroni and Cheese recipe pop up in my google reader, I knew it'd be a great match for the French Dip sandwiches I was making for dinner. I have what I consider to be a tried and true macaroni recipe, however it doesn't use an egg, and PW's does so I think it was an interesting mini experiment to try her version. I can safely say that her dish is RICH. Prior to baking, it's an absolutely creamy dish. Too creamy to eat at that stage. However after baking, once I plated the macaroni it seemed almost lumpy, and lost much of that creamy texture. It was still very rich, but I prefer a moderately creamy mac & cheese and so in my book, my go-to recipe wins.

Here's the Macaroni & Cheese recipe from Pioneer Woman's Website

  • 4 cups dried macaroni
  • 1/4 cup (1/2 stick, 4 tablespoons) butter
  • 1/4 cup all-purpose flour
  • 2 1/2 cups whole milk
  • 2 heaping teaspoons dry mustard (more if desired)
  • 1 egg, beaten
  • 1 pound cheese, grated
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt (more to taste)
  • 1/2 teaspoon seasoned salt (more to taste)
  • 1 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • *Optional spices: cayenne pepper, paprika, thyme

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees
  2. Cook macaroni until very firm. Macaroni should be too firm to eat right out of the pot. Drain.
  3. In a small bowl, beat egg.In a large pot, melt butter and sprinkle in flour. Whisk together over medium-low heat. Cook mixture for five minutes, whisking constantly. Don’t let it burn.
  4. Pour in milk, add mustard, and whisk until smooth. Cook for five minutes until very thick. Reduce heat to low.
  5. Take 1/4 cup of the sauce and slowly pour it into beaten egg, whisking constantly to avoid cooking eggs. Whisk together till smooth.
  6. Pour egg mixture into sauce, whisking constantly. Stir until smooth.
  7. Add in cheese and stir to melt.
  8. Add salts and pepper. Taste sauce and add more salt and seasoned salt as needed! DO NOT UNDERSALT.
  9. Pour in drained, cooked macaroni and stir to combine.
  10. Serve immediately (very creamy) or pour into a buttered baking dish, top with extra cheese, and bake for 20 to 25 minutes or until bubbly and golden on top.
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1 comment:

  1. I love a creamy mac n cheese, so I migh try this. I'm always hunting for the perfect mac. I have a really good one that I've been meaning to post in my blog, I'll try to get on that next week.