Before I discovered Stovetop Mac and Cheese, this Baked Macaroni and Cheese was my go-to recipe. They both have a place in our menu rotation, but this will always have first place in my heart (or is it stomach?). Overtime I've experimented with several cheese blends, and surprisingly extra sharp cheddar paired with American cheese is by far our favorite.
I've been meaning to post this recipe for a while now, but until now I haven't been able to get a decent photo. Thank you time change for giving me better light for dinner photos! Coincidentally, this year's time change brought with it a drastic change in weather, which indicates this may be the last baked mac and cheese of the season. If you want to fulfill your mac and cheese craving before spring and summer are here to stay, go ahead and make this soon.
Here is what you'll need:
- 8 oz. short pasta (I prefer cellentani, but I only had medium shells on hand)
- 5 Tbsp butter
- 1/4 cup all purpose flour
- 2 3/4 cup 1% milk
- 2 tsp Worcestershire sauce
- 1/2 tsp dried mustard powder
- 1/4 tsp black pepper
- 6 oz. shredded extra sharp cheddar cheese
- 4 oz. shredded American cheese
- 1/3 cup grated Parmesan cheese
Bring water to a boil in a large pot, add salt and pasta. Cook pasta partially through, removing from boiling water 2 minutes before instructions tell you to (you want the pasta undercooked since it will cook more in the oven). Drain and set aside.
In a large saute pan over medium heat, melt butter. Add flour, stir and allow to cook 3-5 minutes until it becomes golder brown. The mixture will bubble and foam, stir to be sure it doesn't burn.
Slowly add milk, stirring constantly until thickened. Add Worcestershire, mustard and pepper, combine well. Add cheddar and American cheeses and stir until melted and smooth. Add cooked pasta to cheese sauce and combine well.
Pour pasta into greased baking dish. Sprinkle top with Parmesan cheese. Bake for 30-45 minutes or until top is golden brown. Serves 6-8.
Source: Adapted from Rosemary Brown's Big Kitchen Instruction Book