No recipe collection is complete without a mac and cheese recipe. And with Thanksgiving right around the corner, I wanted to get this recipe up on the blog ASAP. It’s a great crowd pleaser with adults and kids alike. This mac and cheese has the best of both worlds, it’s cooked on the stove top, and finished off under the broiler. The Monterey Jack gives this mac and cheese texture, while the sharp cheddar cheese gives it flavor.
- 6 slices hearty white bread, torn into quarters
- 5 tablespoons unsalted butter, plus 3 tablespoons cut into 6 pieces and chilled
- 4 quarts water
- 1 pound elbow macaroni
- 1 tablespoon kosher salt
- 6 tablespoons all-purpose flour
- 1½ teaspoons dry mustard
- 1 teaspoon kosher salt
- ¼ teaspoon cayenne pepper
- 5 cups milk (whole, low-fat or skim will work for this recipe)
- 8 ounces Monterey Jack cheese, shredded (2 cups)
- 8 ounces sharp cheddar cheese, shredded (2 cups)
- Pulse bread and 3 tablespoons chilled butter in a food processor to coarse crumbs, about 10 pulses and set aside.
- Bring 4 quarts of water to a boil in a large pot. Add macaroni and 1 tablespoon salt and cook stirring often, until tender, just past al dente stage and drain.
- Adjust your oven rack to the lower-middle position and heat broiler.
- Melt remaining 5 tablespoons of butter in the now empty pot over medium-high heat. Add flour, mustard, 1 teaspoon salt and cayenne pepper and cook whisking constantly until the mixture becomes fragrant and deepens in color, about 1 minute. Gradually whisk in milk and bring the mixture to a boil, whisking occasionally, until thickened, about 5 minutes. Turn off the heat and slowly whisk in Monterey Jack and cheddar cheese until completely melted. Add macaroni to the sauce and cook over medium-low heat, stirring constantly until the mixture is heated through about 6 minutes.
- Transfer the mixture to a 13x9 inch broiler safe baking dish and sprinkle the bread crumb mixture on top. Place under the broiler for 3 minutes, rotate baking dish and broil for another 3 minutes. Once the topping is a deep golden brown, remove from the oven and let cool for 5 minutes before serving.
Adapted from Cooks Illustrated