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Friday, November 11, 2011

The Mac Daddy of Mac-n-Cheese

I have discovered the most AMAZING trick for making killer mac-n-cheese EVER! No seriously. Trust me, I'm a fat girl, I know comfort food. First off I have to give credit where credit is due and the original idea came from here. So on with our cheesy epiphany. I must admit that I found the idea of cooking pasta in milk suspect and when I told Big Daddy about this, he thought I was crazy as well but my curiosity was piqued so I decided to try it out.

I didn't have macaroni on hand, but I did have some spirals so that's what I used. I filled a sauce pan about half full of 1% milk. I slowly brought it to a simmer and then added my box of spirals. I  simmered the milk for seven minutes to cook the pasta and that's when the magic happened. You see as pasta cooks, it releases starch into the pasta water. When you cook the pasta in milk, the starch is released into the milk thickening just like it would if you were adding corn starch or flour. So basically in the process of cooking the pasta, you're 2/3 of the way home on a bechamel sauce (a basic white sauce) which is the base sauce for mac-n-cheese. So after simmering for 7 minutes I had a nice thick milky sauce to which I added a couple of fists full of grated cheddar cheese and a three or so tablespoons of butter. Voila! Add a little salt and pepper and you've got some super creamy mac-n-cheese. But wait! you're thinking, I really love the crunchewiness of baked mac-n-cheese! Have no fear my possums, I do too. So then I take the whole delicious, creamy mess and put it in an oiled baking dish, throw a few breadcrumbs on it and bake at 375 until bubbly. Duuuuuuude, it turned out super delish! (If I do say so myself.)

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