Saturday, May 31, 2008

Ronnie’s Low-fat (just kidding) Macaroni and Cheese

This is Hilton Boover's (my brother-in-law) favorite. It must be made for every family occasion. Ironically, I am not a big fan of mac and cheese. But, this is the old-fashioned, southern funeral/church social version.

1 lb. sharp cheddar cheese
1 lb. mild cheddar Cheese
1 quart half and half
1 cup of milk
1 stick of butter
½ cup all purpose flour
Salt to taste
1 lb. of dry macaroni boiled al dente in salted water

Start by making a béchamel (white) sauce. This is begun by melting the butter, stirring in the flour and cooking the flour and butter mixture for a minute or two. Then, add the half and half and stir with a whisk until the sauce is brought up to nearly a boil and thick. It should be the consistency of loose gravy. Add milk (about one cup) until this consistency is achieved. To complete the sauce, add one pound of grated sharp cheddar cheese and ½ lb. mild cheese gradually until smoothly combined (save the other mild cheese for the topping). Add salt to taste. Coat a 9X12 pan and a smaller gratin pan with non-stick spray. Combine cooked noodles and finished cheese sauce. Put combined sauce and noodles in both pans. Top with reserved mild cheddar and cover with foil. Bake until hot and bubbly.

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