This is a favorite of our family and friends. I make three or four varieties for my annual St. Patrick’s Day Party and it’s a big hit!

Anne’s Mac and Cheese

Pasta

Get 1 lb. pasta cooking while you make the sauce so you can drain and then combine when sauce is done. I use Cavatappi when I can find it, I sometimes buy it on Amazon.com. Any dense short pasta that will hold a lot of sauce is good. There are some nice ones in Costco Pasta combos. Cook pasta according to directions and undercook a bit so it soaks up more sauce when combined.

Sauce

  • 1 cube (1/4 lb) butter (real stuff)
  • small sweet onion, diced
  • 1 tsp pre-chopped garlic (from jar) or fresh if you’d like
  • 1/2 cup Wondra Flour (very fine for making sauces and gravies, comes in a can)

Melt butter and saute onion on medium low heat until soft. Add garlic and flour and mix with a whisk. Cook until browned a little (a light “roux”). While still on heat, whisk in: 2 cups whole milk 2 cups heavy cream 1/4 tsp cayenne pepper, adjust to taste 1/2 tsp or more of garlic salt fresh ground pepper to taste Cook at a slow simmer for 5 minutes until thickened (should coat the back of a spoon). If it gets too thick, add a little pasta water to thin down.

Take sauce off heat and fold in cheese** until melted and smooth. Combine cooked, drained pasta with sauce and put in a 13 X 9 baking pan. You can refrigerate at this point and cook later if you want.

**I use different types of cheese. A few of my favorites: 1.5 lbs. shredded sharp cheddar (Kirkland block from Costco is good!) or 8 oz crumbled gorgonzola and 12 oz. shredded swiss/gruyere (packaged from Trader Joes)

Just before baking, crush Cheez Its in a ziplock bag and sprinkle on top (as much as you want to get a crunchy topping!), then sprinkle shredded parmasean cheese on top of that. You can drizzle a little olive oil on top if you want, not required. Bake at 325 degrees (300 degrees convection bake) for 30-40 minutes or more until browned a little on the top. Cook longer if refrigerated before cooking. Enjoy!

Full Ingredients List:

  • 1 lb. pasta (cavatappi or see * above)
  • 1 cube (1/4 lb) butter (real stuff) small sweet onion, diced
  • 1 tsp pre-chopped garlic (from jar) or fresh if you’d like
  • 1/2 cup Wondra Flour (very fine for making sauces and gravies, comes in a can)
  • 2 cups whole milk
  • 2 cups heavy cream
  • 1/4 tsp cayenne pepper or more
  • 1/2 tsp or more of garlic salt fresh ground pepper to taste
  • 1.5 lbs. shredded sharp cheddar cheese or other (see ** above)
  • Cheese Its and shredded Parmesan for topping

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