Thursday, October 18, 2012

jalapeno mac & cheese

cheesy goodness
My friend Kara was just by for a visit and this is what we had for lunch!  I was worried I wouldn't have time to make it before she got here but Madi was quite the good lil' baby this am.  I decided to make this because I know Kara has tried my broccoli mac and cheese recipe (and liked it!) but I wanted to throw in a little twist.  This recipe is inspired by the flavours you'd get in a jalapeno popper and a beer.

what you need:
*fills a 9 x 9" baking dish
  • 3 cups freshly grated old cheddar 
  • 1 cup freshly grated pecorino romano
  • 1/4 cup shredded Parmesan 
  • 2 slices multigrain toast
  • 2 shallots
  • 3 garlic cloves
  • 1 small jalapeno 
  • 1/2 beer
  • 1 cup of milk (1 or 2%...don't use skim!)
  • 2 tbsp butter
  • 1 tsp canola oil
  • 2 tbsp flour
  • salt and pepper
  • 3 cups dried macaroni 
what to do:

  1. Get a big pot of water going to cook your pasta. Cook it just under al dante because it will finish cooking in the cheese sauce later.
  2. Preheat oven to 400 F.
  3. While you're waiting for the water to boil, finely dice shallots, garlic, and jalapeno (remove seeds if you don't want it too spicy).  
  4. In a non-stick pan on medium heat, melt butter with canola oil and then add the flour (you are making a rue) - keep stirring until it makes a smooth paste and the flour becomes a slight golden colour.
  5. Add the shallots and garlic.  Turn the heat down to medium-low and try to incorporate it into the rue.  It may seem lumpy but that's OK.  Keep stirring and then after 1 minute add the jalapeno and continue to stir.
  6. After another minute or so (once the veggies have softened), slowing add the milk, whisking or stirring continuously.  Add the shredded cheddar and pecorino romano, stir and as the cheese melts the mixture should smooth out.  Add the beer then reduce heat to simmer on low for another 5-10 minutes.  Add desired amount of salt and pepper.
7.  While the sauce is simmering (remember to stir occasionally), toast the bread and then blend it roughly to make bread crumbs.  Mix well with the grated Parmesan.
8.  Add cooked pasta to the cheese sauce - stir well and turn off the heat.  It will seem liquidy but not to worry - the pasta will absorb all that cheesiness and will dry a little more after baking.

 9.  Pour into baking dish and top with breadcrumb mixture.  Bake for 12-15 minutes, then broil for 30 seconds to brown the top.  Serve hot and enjoy!

1 comment:

  1. THERE WAS BEER IN THERE?!?! Now I like it even more!!!! haha xox thanks for lunch!!! So good to see you and meet Madi!!!!