When my boys were younger, they may have thought that macaroni and cheese came out of a box or a foil lined bag; I hope not but it’s possible. Growing up, my grandmother always made our macaroni and cheese fresh to order. She often served it with ham and peas but always served it with stewed tomatoes.
Here’s her Macaroni and Cheese recipe. The ingredients she used 35 years ago are still available today. She always baked hers until the cheese was melted and the top started to turn a light brown forming a bit of a crust. As an adult, that’s my favorite part.
This recipe serves two plus some leftovers for lunch tomorrow.
1/2 pound elbow macaroni noodles
3 tablespoons butter plus extra for coating the casserole
3 tablespoons flour
1/2 cup half and half
1/2 cup milk
1 cup shredded cheddar cheese (reserve 1/3 cup for the top)
1/2 cup shredded monterey jack cheese
1/2 teaspoon salt for the pasta water
Salt and pepper for seasoning
- Preheat the oven to 350-degrees F.
- Coat a casserole dish with butter.
- Bring 2 cups of water to boil in a saucepan. Add 1/2 teaspoon salt and elbow noodles. Cook until al dente or just tender.
- Melt butter in a second saucepan. Stir in flour to make a roux. Add the half and half, stir constantly with a whisp until the mixture begins to thicken. Stir in the milk. Add the shredded cheese 1/3 cup at a time until melted and creamed together with the milk. Reserve 1/3 cup of the cheddar cheese to sprinkle on the top. The consistency should be like a smooth gravy. If it’s too thick add more milk. Too thin add more cheese.
- Drain the pasta and add to the buttered casserole dish. Pour the cheese and milk mixture over the top. Give a stir until the pasta is coated.
- Sprinkle the mixture with the remaining cheddar cheese.
- Bake until the cheese is melted and the sauce is bubbling.