Martha's Macaroni & Cheese

Source: ©2002 Martha Stewart Living Omnimedia, Inc.
Author: Martha Stewart
Servings: 6 - 8
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 55 minutes
Type: Vegetarian (definitely NOT vegan)

8 tbsps (1 stick) unsalted* butter,
plus more for dish
6 slices white bread, crusts removed,
torn into 1/4 to 1/2-inch pieces
5 1/2 cups milk
1/2 cup all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons salt

1/4 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1/4 tsp cayenne pepper, or to taste
4-1/2 cups (18 oz) sharp cheddar cheese, grated
2 cups (8 oz) Gruyere cheese, grated
or 1 1/4 cups (5 oz) Pecorino Romano, grated
1-lb elbow macaroni

  1. Heat the oven to 375 degrees F. Butter a 3-quart casserole dish; set aside.

  2. Place bread in a medium bowl. In a small saucepan over medium heat, melt 2 tablespoons butter. Pour butter into the bowl with bread, and toss. Set bread crumbs aside.

  3. In a medium saucepan set over medium heat, heat milk. Melt remaining 6 tablespoons butter in a high-sided skillet over medium heat. When butter bubbles, add flour. Cook, whisking, 1 minute. While whisking, slowly pour in hot milk. Continue cooking, whisking constantly, until the mixture bubbles and becomes thick. Remove pan from heat. Stir in salt, nutmeg, black pepper, cayenne pepper, 3 cups cheddar cheese, and 1 1/2 cups Gruyere or 1 cup Pecorino Romano; set cheese sauce aside.

  4. Fill a large saucepan with water; bring to a boil. Add macaroni; cook 2 to 3 minutes less than manufacturer's directions, until the outside of pasta is cooked and the inside is underdone. (Different brands of macaroni cook at different rates; be sure to read the instructions.) Transfer macaroni to a colander, rinse under cold running water, and drain well.

  5. Stir macaroni into the reserved cheese sauce. Pour mixture into prepared dish. Sprinkle remaining 1 1/2 cups cheddar cheese, 1/2 cup Gruyere or 1/4 cup Pecorino Romano, and bread crumbs over top.

  6. Bake until browned on top, about 30 minutes. Transfer dish to a wire rack to cool 5 minutes; serve hot.

NOTES: *I use salted butter and reduce the amount of salt in the recipe.

 

From Martha's Kitchen
Episode#: MS1C71

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