"The tradition of Italian cooking is that of the matriarch. This is the cooking of grandma. She didn't waste time thinking too much about the celery. She got the best celery she could and then she dealt with it."--Mario Batali

Creamy Baked Macaroni and Cheese Recipe

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This recipe for Creamy Baked Macaroni and Cheese, by , is from Mom's Favorite Recipes, one of the cookbooks created at FamilyCookbookProject.com. We help families or individuals create heirloom cookbook treasures.

Contributor:  
Contributor:  
Mom

Category:
Category:

Ingredients:  
Ingredients:  
1 lb. dried elbow pasta or our favorite is Cavatappi pasta
1/2 cup unsalted butter 1 stick
1/2 cup all purpose flour
1 1/2 cups whole milk
2 1/2 cups half and half
4 cups grated medium or sharp cheddar cheese divided
2 cups grated Swiss or Gruyere cheese divided
1/2 Tbsp. salt
1/2 tsp. black pepper
1/4 tsp. paprika
1/4 tsp. dry mustard powder
Dash of Tabasco

Directions:
Directions:
Preheat oven to 325 degrees F and grease a 3 qt baking dish (9x13"). Set aside.

Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. When boiling, add dried pasta and cook 1 minute less than the package directs for al dente. Drain and drizzle with a little bit of olive oil to keep from sticking.

While water is coming up to a boil, grate cheeses and toss together to mix, then divide into three piles. Approximately 3 cups for the sauce, 1 1/2 cups for the inner layer, and 1 1/2 cups for the topping.

Melt butter in a large saucepan over MED heat. Sprinkle in flour and whisk to combine. Mixture will look like very wet sand. Cook for approximately 1 minute, whisking often. Slowly pour in about 2 cups or so of the milk/half and half, while whisking constantly, until smooth. Slowly pour in the remaining milk/half and half, while whisking constantly, until combined and smooth.

Continue to heat over MED heat, whisking very often, until thickened to a very thick consistency. It should almost be the consistency of a semi thinned out condensed soup.

Stir in spices and 1 1/2 cups of the cheeses, stirring to melt and combine. Stir in another 1 1/2 cups of cheese, and stir until completely melted and smooth.

In a large mixing bowl, combine drained pasta with cheese sauce, stirring to combine fully. Pour half of the pasta mixture into the prepared baking dish. Top with 1 1/2 cups of grated cheeses, then top that with the remaining pasta mixture.

Sprinkle the top with the last 1 1/2 cups of cheese and seasoned bread crumbs or crushed croutons if desired and bake for 15 minutes, until cheesy is bubbly and casserole is lightly golden brown.

Number Of Servings:
Number Of Servings:
8-10
Preparation Time:
Preparation Time:
45 minutes
Personal Notes:
Personal Notes:
We love this macaroni and cheese - especially with homemade croutons (see recipe for croutons in bread section of this cookbook). You can make it with all cheddar cheese instead of the cheddar and Swiss cheese if you like. So Delicious!

 

 

 

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