Friday, May 14, 2010

Triple Cheese Spirals

I love macaroni and cheese. My favorite of course is Kraft, but I have fun trying out different recipes. Someday I think I will find a recipe that is as good as Kraft macaroni and cheese, but it hasn't happened yet. This is a good, easy recipe. It can be fun for kids too, because of the pasta shapes! Thi sis another great recipe from Food Network Magazine.

Triple Cheese Spirals

    *  Kosher salt
    * 12 ounces gemelli, cavatappi or other spiral-shaped pasta ( I used wagon wheel shaped pasta)
    * 3 tablespoons unsalted butter
    * 1 tablespoon all-purpose flour
    * 1 teaspoon dry mustard
    * Pinch of cayenne pepper
    * 1 (12-ounce) can evaporated milk
    * 1/2 cup whole milk
    * 3/4 cup shredded yellow sharp cheddar cheese
    * 3/4 cup shredded monterey jack cheese
    * 1/2 cup grated parmesan cheese
    * 1/2 cup panko (Japanese breadcrumbs)
    * 2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley, chives and/or scallions

Bring a pot of salted water to a boil; add the pasta and cook until al dente, about 8 minutes.

Meanwhile, melt 1 tablespoon butter in a saucepan over medium heat. Add the flour, mustard and cayenne and stir with a wooden spoon to make a paste. Cook, stirring, until the paste puffs slightly, about 1 minute. Whisk in both milks and 1/2 teaspoon salt and simmer, whisking occasionally, until slightly thickened and creamy, 6 to 7 minutes. Add the cheddar and jack cheeses and all but 2 tablespoons of the parmesan and whisk until melted; keep warm.

Combine the panko, herbs and/or scallions, 1 tablespoon butter and the remaining parmesan in a microwave-safe bowl and microwave until the butter melts, about 1 minute; toss.( I did this, and my parmesan ened up in a big melty lump. So I would suggest melting everything first, and then adding the Parmesan in after).

Drain the pasta, reserving about 1 cup cooking water, and return to the pot. Toss with the remaining 1 tablespoon butter, then stir in the cheese sauce, adding the reserved cooking water if needed. Season with salt and top with the breadcrumb mixture.

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