Thursday, May 31, 2012

Homemade Mac and Cheese

I think there are like, a gazillion macaroni and cheese recipes out there.  Anything from specialty cheeses to 5 cheese, to one cheese to this and that and whatever.

I don't usually follow recipes, I'm more of a "cook by the heart" kind of gal.  I know what tastes good together, I throw it in a pot with a pinch of this and a spoon of that and call it good.

Homemade Mac and Cheese

It's called learning how to cook with your greatgrandma.  I used to find it intimidating watching her in the kitchen, this amazingly cute little old lady who never followed a recipe, but yet knew exactly the right amount of spices to throw in.

That's how I learned, that's how she taught me, and that's why I love cooking, in a way.  That sense of freedom in the kitchen to do whatever I want, eat whatever I wish and experiment.

As most of you already know, I'm a military wife and with that come deployments and TDY's, separations that are never easy on the soldier or the family.  To make things easier and a little more bearable for the kids, we do all sorts of things to keep them connected with daddy.....and then we also give them a little more reign of certain things.

Like in this case....the Menu Planning for the time that daddy is away.

Needless to say, there's a whole lot of hotdogs, ravioli, homemade pizza, quesadillas, mac and cheese etc. going on.

So for tonight's dinner they jotted down Homemade Mac and Cheese, and that's what I gave them.  No recipe, just a few things thrown together and they loved it, and my 9 year old boy said that on a scale of 1 to 10 it was a 1000.  I'll.take.it!!!

Homemade Mac and Cheese

Homemade Mac and Cheese

1 box macaroni or whatever pasta you have available (I used rotini)
2 tablespoons butter
2 tablespoons flour
2 cups of milk
salt, pepper and nutmeg to taste
Shredded Mozzarella, Cheddar, Colby Jack cheese
Panko breadcrumbs

Cook the noodles according to package directions, set aside.

Preheat oven to 375 degrees.

In a skillet, melt the butter, then add the flour and whisk well....start adding the milk slowly to the skillet while stirring vigorously with the whisk to prevent lumps.

When it starts thickening, add salt, pepper and nutmeg to taste.

Add in the shredded cheeses (again to taste, if you want it very cheesy, by all means go for it).  Turn off the heat and continue stirring until all the cheese is melted.

Pour the pasta into the skillet and incorporate everything well.  Transfer to a baking dish.  Sprinkle with panko breadcrumbs and some more shredded cheese and bake for 30 minutes until bubbly and nice and brown on the top :)

Homemade Mac and Cheese

I made a pan of the mac and cheese and since it's a lot for us 3, I scooped some into small 1/4 oz mason jars for a quick lunch for the kids.

Homemade Mac and Cheese

The remaining mac and cheese is cooling on my counter and will then be transferred to a foil dish, covered tightly with plastic wrap and frozen :)

5 comments:

Two Infinity and Beyond said...

Looks amazing! Homemade Mac is the best. Thanks for sharing. I will definitely be pinning this recipe :)

xo,
Allison
http://barretts1234.blogspot.com/

Anita Philipps said...

Looks yummy

Marie said...

Mac and Cheese is a real favourite around here too! Yours looks delicious! My ex husband was in the military as well. I spent a lot of time on my own with the five children. I never minded really. There were times I did get lonely and I never gave birth in the same place I got pregnant, so I never had any friends to visit me in the hospital, or family to help out, but somehow we make it through. Being a Military Wife takes a special person I think. xxoo

The Fluff Master said...

Ha! I just made 3 different Mac and Cheeses yesterday! You are right, there are a gazillion different recipes out there - and I was also kind of shocked to find out there are also about a gazillion ways to cook it too! I tried a crock pot, one pot stove top and and oven baked recipe. The oven one was the favorite, although we did enjoy all three versions. I think your version is my next venture! Thanks for sharing!!

Lucia said...

Ciao! Ho scoperto il tuo blog per caso e lo trovo molto interessante, per cui ho deciso di seguirti :-) Questa pastasciutta รจ gustosissima, anche se non proprio light :-D Salutoni ai tuoi bimbi :-)