Okay, so mac and cheese. My husband grew up eating lots of baked mac and cheese. I've made it a few times, but last week I felt like experimenting. I needed a meal that I could make before work and have ready to go in the oven after work. And I needed something that didn't take too much time. As a main dish, this serves two, but could easily be doubled or served as a side.
You guys, get ready for some action shots!
Step 1: Get your salted water on the stove to boil. While that's going, grate about 1/3 of a lb of cheddar cheese. Or whatever cheese you want. I just love sharp cheddar.
Next, add an egg to the cheese.
And 1 cup of whole milk. Because whole milk is a whole food. Seriously, I'd use raw if it was legal!
1/2 tsp salt.
1/2 tsp dried mustard or dijon. You can up this. I love the mustard flavor, but hubs doesn't.
And 1/2 tsp nutmeg. Yum!
Give everything a good stir to combine.
When your water is boiling, add half a box of whole wheat pasta and cook for ONLY 4 MINUTES! This will keep the pasta from feeling over cooked after it's baked. It's going to absorb moisture from the milk in the oven.
Butter a 9 by 9 baking dish. Yes, use butter. No, it's not going to kill you. But the chemicals in those damn baking sprays might!
After draining your pasta, pour it in the baking dish. Then add the cheese mixture.
Give everything a good stir to make sure that the cheese is spread out and the pasta is evenly coated.
Top with whole wheat bread crumbs and 1 to 1 1/2 tbsp of butter cut into little bits.
You can bake this now, or cover and put in the fridge for later. When you're ready to bake, preheat your oven to 375. Bake on the top rack for 20 minutes. Baking it on the top will help to crisp up the bread crumbs.
Seriously, this with a vegetable is a meal in our house. So good.
Let's zoom in on the gooey, cheesiness shall we? You might want to get a napkin to wipe your drool.