Recipes / Side Dishes

Creamy Mac & Cheese


Don't be afraid to dish out a classic this holiday season. When the mild, rich flavor of Vermont Cheddar melts into cavatappi noodles, it's bound to go down in the recipe books.

Ingredients

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 325°F and grease a 3-quart, or 9x13" baking dish. Set aside.
  2. Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Once boiling, add dried pasta and cook 1 minute less than the package recommends for al dente. Drain then drizzle with a little bit of olive oil to keep from sticking.
  3. While water is coming to a boil, grate both cheeses and toss together to mix, then divide into 3 piles: Approximately 3 cups for the sauce, 1 1/2 cups for the inner layer, and 1 1/2 cups for the topping.
  4. Melt butter in a large saucepan over medium heat. Sprinkle in flour and whisk to combine. Cook for approximately 1 minute, whisking often. Slowly, and partially, add milk and half & half, whisking between pours, until smooth. Continue to slowly pour in the remaining milk and half & half, whisking constantly, until fully combined and smooth.
  5. Continue to heat over medium heat, whisking very often, until brought to a very thick consistency, similar to a semi-thinned out condensed soup.
  6. Stir in salt, pepper, paprika and 1 1/2 cups of the mixed cheeses — stirring in another 1 1/2 cups as it melts and combines — until fully melted and smooth.
  7. In a large mixing bowl, combine drained pasta with cheese sauce, stirring to combine fully. Pour half of the pasta mixture into the prepared baking dish. Top with 1 1/2 cups of grated cheeses, then top that with the remaining pasta mixture.
  8. Sprinkle the top with panko and the last 1 1/2 cups of cheese and bake for 15 minutes, until cheese is bubbly and lightly golden brown. Garnish with parsley.
 

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