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Ultimate Macaroni and Cheese

Ultimate Macaroni and Cheese

Ultimate Macaroni and Cheese
Recipe: Daleen van der Merwe

Serves: 4
Preparation: 25 minutes
Cooking: 20 minutes

1½ cup macaroni (about 225 g)

1½ Tbsp butter or margarine
2 small cloves garlic, minced
½ tsp chopped fresh thyme
3 Tbsp cake flour
2 cups milk
1 Tbsp Dijon mustard
⅛ tsp grated nutmeg
¼ tsp salt
¼ tsp pepper
pinch cayenne pepper
1½ cups grated Cheddar cheese
For the topping
⅓ cup dried bread crumbs

2 Tbsp grated Parmesan cheese or 3 Tbsp grated Cheddar cheese
1½ Tbsp butter, cut in cubes

Preheat the oven to 200 °C. Grease a 1½ Litre casserole dish.

In a large pot of boiling salted water, cook the pasta according to the package directions until al dente. Drain and set aside.

Meanwhile, in a large saucepan, melt the butter or margarine over medium heat, sauté the garlic and thyme, stirring occasionally, until fragrant, about 2 minutes. Whisk in the flour and cook, stirring constantly, for 2 minutes. Pour in the milk in a slow steady stream, whisking constantly until smooth.

Cook, whisking often, until thickened, about 7 minutes. Whisk in the mustard, nutmeg, salt, pepper and cayenne pepper. Stir in the cheese until smooth. Add the pasta and stir. Scrape into the prepared casserole dish.

In bowl, combine the bread crumbs with the Parmesan cheese, using your fingers, rub in the butter until the mixture resembles coarse sand. Sprinkle over the pasta.

Bake until the sauce is bubbly and topping is golden, about 25 minutes. Let stand for 10 minutes before serving.

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