Stovetop Mac and Cheese

Today is the first day of Comfort Week here at Real Mom Kitchen and what a better way to start the week than with Mac and Cheese – gooey, creamy, yummy, cheesy goodness. I decided to try a recipe that I found in the Oct. 2009 issue of Martha Stewart’s Everyday Food.

I loved the fact that the recipe is made on the stovetop.  Sometimes the oven versions tend to dry out. I also liked that it only required one type of cheese.  This recipe was simple to make and was delicious.  I did adapt the recipe slightly.  In my opinion, the original recipe was too cheesy, so I ended up adding more cooked pasta.  I also don’t keep whole milk on hand, so I used 1 cup cream and 3 cups of skim milk in it’s place.  Then for fun I used fusilli pasta.

I really think you will love this version.   I think it is my new fav.  I do have some other mac and cheese recipe that are also wonderful if you want to check them out – Pioneer Woman’s Mac and Cheese and Deluxe Macaroni and Cheese.

Stovetop Mac and Cheese

  • 3 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 1/4 cup finely chopped onion
  • 1/3 cup all-purpose flour
  • Coarse salt
  • 4 cups whole milk (I use 1 cup cream 3 cups skim milk)
  • 1/8 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 1 pound small shell pasta or elbow macaroni, uncooked (I used fusilli)
  • 4 cups coarsely grated sharp yellow cheddar (3/4 pound)
  • 1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
  • 1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
    1. In a medium saucepan, melt butter over medium; add onion and cook until softened, about 4 minutes. Add flour and 1/2 teaspoon salt; cook, stirring frequently, until mixture is pale golden, has a slightly nutty aroma, and is the texture of cooked oatmeal, about 5 minutes.
    2. Whisking constantly, pour in 2 cups milk; add 2 more cups milk and cayenne and whisk until smooth. Cook mixture, stirring constantly along bottom of pan, until boiling, 6 to 7 minutes. Reduce heat to low. Simmer gently, stirring occasionally, until sauce thickens and does not feel grainy when a small amount is rubbed between two fingers, about 10 minutes.
    3. Meanwhile, in a large pot of boiling salted water, cook pasta until al dente; drain thoroughly and return to pot. Remove sauce from heat and let cool 10 minutes. Quickly whisk in cheese, mustard, and Worcestershire. Pour cheese sauce over pasta and stir to coat.

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