Macaroni and cheese is naturally creamy and cheesy. But, I recently came across a mac and cheese recipe wherein three kinds of cheese are used. As a big cheese-lover, I immediately tried the recipe.
I first saw the recipe in the food blog Cafe Delites. The dish is called Creamy Garlic Parmesan Mac and Cheese. The Parmesan cheese is the star of the show. You will know why later.
The original American recipe of mac and cheese is just cheddar without garlic. It is creamy without any extra texture.
The Cheesiest Cheese Sauce
Each cheese has a purpose to make the basic recipe more memorable. Cheddar maintains the usual taste of mac and cheese. Meanwhile, mozzarella makes it more enjoyable to eat because of the mouthwatering cheesy strings and thicker sauce. Lastly, with the savory taste of Parmesan cheese, mac and cheese becomes more compatible to pair with garlic. Shredded Parmesan cheese also looks beautiful all over the top.
I followed the ingredients as is, which is good for 10 servings (1 cup each). Whenever I cook a dish for the first time, I always share it with my parents even if I already have a family of my own. That’s why 10 servings was perfect for me.
First off, let’s talk about the pasta. For 10 serves, 500 grams or 1 pound of dry pasta is enough. The perfect pasta for mac and cheese is obviously elbow macaroni. Cellentani is also a good choice.
Next, we have to pay attention to the sauce. We need 1/4 cup of butter, four cloves of garlic that are crushed, 1/4 cup of plain or all-purpose flour, 4 1/2 cups of full-fat or skimmed milk, 1 tablespoon of corn flour or cornstarch, salt, pepper, 1 tablespoon of vegetable stock or chicken bouillon powder, 3/4 cup of grated cheddar cheese, 1 cup of grated Parmesan cheese, and 6 ounces of mozzarella cheese.
Another thing that makes this mac and cheese recipe unique is the crispy topping. The topping is made of 2/3 cup Panko breadcrumbs, and 1 1/2 tablespoons of butter. I noticed how mac and cheese can be dull to the taste sometimes, especially if I’m not in the mood for it. Garlic, Parmesan cheese, and the crispy topping can really take things up a notch.
The instructions are also classified into three in the following order: pasta, topping and sauce. For the pasta, boil it in salted water. Afterwards, drain the water and rinse the pasta with cold water. Set the pasta aside while you preheat the broiler or oven grill to 190 degrees Celsius or 375 degrees Fahrenheit.
For the topping, melt 2 tablespoons of butter in an oven-proof skillet or pan in medium-high heat. Add the breadcrumbs and cook them until they achieve the perfect golden brown color. Set them aside in a bowl.
Now, for the most crucial part, the sauce. Melt butter again in the same skillet. Add garlic and cook it for a minute. Stir or whisk as you add and cook flour for 2 minutes. Lower heat and whisk as you slowly add 4 cups of milk. Boil the mixture until thick.
While boiling, mix 1/2 cup of milk and cornstarch in a jug. Whisk the mixture until thick and free from lumps. Add salt, pepper and bouillon powder. Mix it again.
Remove the sauce from heat. Add the three types of cheese and stir them until they all melted. Add pasta into the sauce. Put the toppings and extra Parmesan cheese. Grill or broil in the oven until the whole thing bubbles. Cool it down before serving.
Simple mac and cheese is delicious enough. What more if it has a kick of distinct flavors, crunchy texture, and three types of cheese? That’s taking comfort food to the next level.
Cheese is also useful for desserts. Check out this cheesecake recipe that will surely delight you and your family.