I call this mac n' cheese "fancy" because my version of mac n' cheese has always been the kind right out of the box. Don't get me wrong, I'm still a lover of the boxed stuff, even though I know it's not the best for you...but I got a craving for some good old-fashioned macaroni and searched the internet until I came across this recipe from Martha Stewart's site. Macaroni is another subject where my husband and I are opposite. I love pizza, he's usually not a fan. I love macaroni, he usually hates it. How in the world can you not like those two things? Anyway, I knew this recipe was a keeper when he said he really liked it. I made this for dinner along with my meatloaf to celebrate my father in law's birthday, which was before Christmas. And before our New Year's resolution to eat healthier....but you have to indulge yourself every now and then, right?
You will need:
-3 Tbsp unsalted butter
-1/4 cup finely chopped onion
-1/3 cup all purpose flour
-1/2 tsp salt (I used sea salt)
-4 cups whole milk (I used 2 cups 2% milk and 2 cups half and half)
-1/8 tsp cayenne pepper
-3/4 pound small shell pasta or elbow macaroni (I used elbow)
-4 cups sharp cheddar cheese
-1 tsp dijon mustard
-1 tsp worcestershire sauce
*In a medium saucepan, melt butter over medium heat. Add onion and cook until softened about 4 minutes.
*Add flour and salt, stirring constantly until pale golden and it has the consitency of oatmeal, about 4 or 5 minutes. Note: I may have freaked out on this step and added another tablespoon of butter because the flour mixture seemed extra lumpy...think I had the heat turned up to high though:)
*Whisking constanly, pour in 2 cups of milk. Add 2 more cups of milk (or half and half like I did), and cayenne pepper and whisk until smooth.
*Cook mixture, stirring constantly along bottom of pan until it is boiling about 6-7 minutes, then reduce the heat to low.
*Simmer, stirring occasionally, about 10 more minutes until sauce thickens
*Meanwhile, cook the macaroni in a separate pot of water according to directions. Drain and return to pot.
*When sauce is thickened, remove from heat and quickly whisk in shredded cheese, mustard, and worcestshire sauce.
*Pour cheese sauce over pasta and stir to coat. Serve immediately.