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Mac n Cheese





8 ozs macaroni (I know a lot of recipes call for elbow mac but I really like a mac with more surface area for hanging onto the cheese. Cavatappi has a few more twists and turns to it. My fav is penne.)
1 tbsp unsalted butter
1 tbsp flour
1 tsp mustard powder
pinch cayenne pepper
12 oz evaporated milk
1 1/2 c cheddar cheese (you can use sharp or mild or flavored, whatever you like)
1/4 c shredded Gruyere
panko or crumbled Ritz crackers




Boil enough water for the type of pasta you bought. Cook til al dente, pour off 1 cup of liquid then drain pasta and set aside.

While the pasta is cooking- melt the butter in a saucepan over med heat. Whisk in the flour, mustard powder, cayenne pepper, cook while whisking for 1 minute. Whisk in the evaporated milk, then simmer about 5 minutes until thickened. Stir in the cheeses and the pasta. Add just enough of the reserved water to make the sauce thick, not thin.

Butter a 9x12 baking dish. Pour in pasta mix, spread panko or crumbled crackers on top and bake at 350 until cheese bubbles.

Alternate ideas-  

  • Pop over to Bow St Market and pick up a cooked 1 1/2 lb lobster, pick the meat and mix in after baking. (Ok, this is easy here, not so much elsewhere!) 
  • Add chopped ham or bacon before baking. 
  • Add tuna fish and peas (tuna pea wiggle) before baking.
  • Broccoli is pretty good slathered in cheese, so that's an option, too.