If you're in a hurry or prefer to sprinkle the dish with crumbled common crackers (saltines aren't bad, either), skip the bread crumb step or simply follow instructions for the stovetop version that follows. You can make fresh bread crumbs by grating brea
INGREDIENTS (for 4 servings):
- Toasted Bread Crumbs:
- 1 cup fresh bread crumbs from French or Italian bread
- Pinch salt
- 1 1/2 tablespoons melted butter
- Macaroni and Cheese:
- 2 quarts water
- 1 1/2 teaspoons salt
- 1/2 pound elbow macaroni
- 4 tablespoons butter
- 2 large eggs
- 1 (12 fluid ounce) can evaporated milk, heated to warm
- 1/4 teaspoon hot red pepper sauce
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- Ground black pepper
- 1 teaspoon dry mustard dissolved in
- 1 teaspoon water
- 3 cups shredded mild Cheddar, American or Monterey Jack cheese
Heat oven to 350 degrees F and set a 1 1/2-quart heatproof dish, such as a souffle pan, in the oven to warm.
Bread Crumbs: Mix bread crumb ingredients together in a small baking pan; set aside.
Macaroni: Bring 2 quarts water to a boil in a large soup kettle. Add 11/2 teaspoons salt and macaroni; cook until almost tender, but still a little firm to the bite. Drain and transfer to preheated dish and stir in butter to melt.
Meanwhile, mix eggs, 1 cup evaporated milk, pepper sauce, 1/2 teaspoon salt (or 1/4 teaspoon if using highly processed cheese like American or even Velveeta), 1/4 teaspoon pepper and mustard mixture in a small bowl.
Pour egg mixture over noodles along with three-fourths of cheese; stir until thoroughly combined and cheese starts to melt.
Place bread crumbs in oven to toast until golden brown, 10 to 15 minutes. Remove from oven and set aside. Place pan of macaroni and cheese in oven too and bake for 5 minutes. Remove pan from oven; thoroughly stir macaroni mixture, adding a little remaining milk and cheese. Return to oven and cook 5 minutes longer. Remove macaroni pan from oven and stir thoroughly so that macaroni and cheese cooks evenly, adding additional cheese and milk if mixture does not look moist and creamy. Return to oven for a total of 20 minutes, removing pan from oven once more to stir in remaining milk and cheese. Serve immediately, sprinkled with bread crumbs.
Article:Macaroni and Cheese: The Real MacCoy'The Perfect Recipe' by Pam Anderson. Copyright© 1998 by Pam Anderson. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company. All rights reserved.