Two months ago I was invited to participate in the World Food Championships in Las Vegas. It took me a few weeks to actually decide whether or not I wanted to participate, but once I finally accepted the invite, I got busy coming up with a flavorful Mac 'n Cheese recipe, which is one of the "builds" or recipes that is required to be cooked by the contestants in my category.
A few things have come up and I had to cancel my trip. It's okay though. Everything happens for a reason.
Now I have some great, easy mac 'n cheese recipes to share with you all and Dominic has a lot of down time with his broken ankle and is enjoying the mac 'n cheese creations with a beer or two.
I hadn't cooked mac 'n cheese from scratch up until this point and am pleasantly surprised at how ridiculously easy it is to do and what a punch of flavor it has compared to the box varieties.
The Gouda Mac 'n Cheese is one of my favorites.
Here's what you need for success...
Smoked Gouda Mac 'n Cheese
2 cups elbow macaroni
1 1/2 cups smoked Gouda cheese, shredded
1 1/2 cups sharp cheddar cheese, shredded
2 T flour
1/2 cup whole milk
1/2 cup cream
1/2 stick butter
1/2 tsp salt
1 tsp pepper, or to taste
1/2 cup Panko crumbs
Boil macaroni in salted water according to package. In a sauce pan, melt butter, flour, milk and cream for a few minutes. Add the shredded cheese to the mixture to melt, reserving 1/2 cup for topping. Once cheese is melted, remove from heat and add the drained macaroni and stir together. Place mixture in a baking dish, sprinkle top with the combined remaining cheese and Panko crumbs.
Bake at 350 for 15-20 minutes, broil on high for last 3 minutes to brown the top.