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Baked Macaroni and Cheese

No recipe image available.One of the classic comfort foods, this baked macaroni and cheese casserole is loaded with three types of cheese and topped with a buttery Parmesan crumb topping.

Recipe Ingredients:

4 tablespoons unsalted butter
2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
1 cup milk
1/4 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon dry mustard, dissolved in 1 teaspoon water
5 ounces grated American cheese
5 ounces grated Monterey Jack, fontina or cheddar cheese
12 ounces elbow macaroni
1/4 cup grated freshly grated Parmesan cheese
freshly ground black pepper

Topping:
2 tablespoons unsalted butter
1/2 cup packed soft bread crumbs
1/4 cup grated freshly grated Parmesan cheese

Cooking Directions:

  1. Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil.
  2. Meanwhile, in a medium saucepan heat 2 tablespoons butter. When foam subsides, add flour and whisk mixture for 1 minute over medium heat. Gradually add milk and continue whisking over medium high heat until mixture thickens, 2 to 3 minutes. Remove from heat and add nutmeg, salt, and dry mustard.
  3. Over low heat, add the American and Monterey Jack cheese and stir with a wooden spoon until cheese is melted and mixture is smooth. Keep warm.
  4. Cook pasta and drain. Add back to pot. Add remaining butter and stir to coat evenly. Add the cheese sauce and the Parmesan to the macaroni and stir to mix. Heat for 3 to 4 minutes or until mixture is hot and creamy.
  5. Meanwhile, heat 2 tablespoons of butter in a large skillet over medium heat until foam subsides. Add the bread crumbs and cook, tossing to coat with butter until bread crumbs just begin to brown. Let cool and stir in Parmesan.
  6. Adjust oven rack so it is 6-inches from the heating element and heat broiler.
  7. Pour cooked macaroni and cheese into a well-greased 2-quart oven proof baking dish. Sprinkle prepared crumbs evenly on top. Broil until crumbs turn deep brown, 2 to 3 minutes. Let stand 5 minutes and serve.
  8. Serve with a sprinkling of freshly ground pepper and additional grated nutmeg if desired.

Makes 6 to 8 servings.