October 31, 2008

Chuck's Favorite Mac and Cheese: Jen's Variation

Tonight we have a Trick or Treat Halloween party at my friend Laura's house. We are having a potluck-style dinner, then we are taking our kids around Laura's neighborhood for trick or treating. It should be fun to see my son, and all of his funny pals, dressed up in their costumes.

My contribution to tonight's dinner is this mac and cheese recipe. I have made it a couple times since first trying it a few months ago, and it is always a big hit. It is easy enough to put together and it is very family friendly.

Chuck's Favorite Mac and Cheese

1 (8 ounce) package elbow
1 (8 ounce) package shredded
sharp Cheddar cheese
1 (12 ounce) container small
curd cottage cheese
1 (8 ounce) container sour
1/4 cup grated Parmesan
salt and pepper to taste
1 cup dry bread crumbs
1/4 cup butter, melted
1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper, added to cheese mixture (optional)
1/2 teaspoon of ground mustard, added to cheese mixture (optional)
3-4 drops of Worcestershire sauce, added to cheese mixture (optional)

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Bring a large pot of lightly salted water to a boil, add pasta, and cook until done; drain.
2. In 9x13 inch baking dish, stir together macaroni, shredded Cheddar cheese, cottage cheese, sour cream, Parmesan cheese, salt and pepper. In a small bowl, mix together bread crumbs and melted butter. Sprinkle topping over macaroni mixture.
3. Bake 30 to 35 minutes, or until top is golden.

Jen's Notes:
Sometimes, I just can't help myself...I just have to add something extra. I saw a couple mac and cheese variations in a cookbook that I have, with cayenne, ground mustard, and Worcestershire sauce. The quantities were small, and it sounded really interesting. What better way to try it, then to experiment on my friends???? I did do a test batch first, and it was phenomenal. It added a little complexity, without being overwhelming. Just a little extra zip. I think this is going to be my best mac and cheese yet!

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