Johnson & Wales University
Associate Instructor Ashley McGee
MACARONI AND CHEESE
1 pound Cut Pasta (Elbows, Small Shells, Penne etc.)
16 ounces Shredded Cheddar Cheese
12 ounces Whole Milk
8 ounces Heavy Cream
6 tablespoons Unsalted Butter
¾ cup Panko Bread Crumbs
1/3 cup All Purpose Flour
1 tablespoon Vegetable Oil
½ teaspoon Salt (For the cheese sauce)
½ teaspoon Salt (For the breadcrumbs)
¼ teaspoon Ground Nutmeg
METHOD OF PREPARATION
1. Cook pasta according to package directions. Drain and rinse under cold water. Transfer to a bowl, add the vegetable oil, and toss to coat pasta. Cover and hold.
2. Melt 3 tablespoons butter in a small sauce pan. When the butter is thoroughly melted, remove the pan from the heat and stir in the flour to make a paste-like consistency.
3. Place the pan back on medium heat and cook the mixture, stirring constantly to prevent burning, for approximately 3 minutes to make a white roux. .
4. Remove the roux from the heat and hold.
5. Add the milk and cream to a medium sauce pan and cook over medium heat until small bubbles start to form around the sides of the pan. CAUTION: Do Not Boil.
6. Remove the hot milk and cream mixture from the heat.
7. Slowly add the roux to the milk and cream mixture while whisking continuously to thoroughly incorporate the roux and prevent lumping.
8. When the roux is thoroughly incorporated, place the mixture back on medium heat and continue cooking while stirring frequently.
9. Continue cooking the mixture until it comes to a slight boil then remove from the heat.
10. To check for proper thickness, the mixture should coat the back of a spoon. If needed, continue cooking over low heat to thicken.
11. When thickened, remove the mixture from the heat, stir in the nutmeg and ½ teaspoon of salt. This is a standard Béchamel sauce
12. Add the shredded cheddar cheese in small amounts stirring it into the Béchamel sauce. When all of the cheese has been added, place back on low heat and stir to melt and thoroughly incorporate the cheese.
13. Pour the cheese sauce over the cooked pasta and fold gently to thoroughly coat the pasta.
14. Transfer the pasta to an appropriately-sized pot and heat over low heat to warm the pasta through. Gently stir a few times to ensure even heating.
15. While the pasta is warming, melt 3 tablespoons of butter in a small sauté pan. When melted add the Panko bread crumbs and ½ teaspoon salt, stir and toss until lightly browned.
16. Transfer the pasta to a serving dish, garnish the top with bread crumbs and serve.