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Chef Jess' Go-To Macaroni and Cheese

Chef Jess' Go-To Macaroni and Cheese

Chef Jess' Go-To Macaroni and Cheese

Yield: 8 servings

Ingredients

 

6 tbsp unsalted butter, plus more to grease baking dish

1 cup panko

680 grams old/extra old Cheddar (suggest 2 year old white Cheddar), grated (about 9 cups)

454 grams macaroni or other favourite noodle

3 ¼ cup 3.5% (homo) milk

3 tbsp flour

1 ½ tsp dry mustard

1 tsp salt

½ tsp freshly ground black pepper

 

Directions

  1. Preheat oven to 350 F. Lightly butter a 9x13 glass baking dish.

  2. In a small fry pan, melt 3 tbsp of the butter over medium-high heat. Add the panko and stir to coat with butter. Cook, stirring often, until panko is golden brown. About 3-4 minutes. Place panko in a small bowl, add a handful of the grated cheese and stir to combine. Set aside.

  3. Bring a large pot of well salted water (about 1 tbsp salt) to a boil. Cook macaroni until al dente. Drain well, without rinsing, and return to pot.

  4. Meanwhile, in a medium saucepan over medium heat, melt the remaining 3 tbsp of butter. Add the flour, dry mustard, salt and pepper and whisk to combine with the butter. Continue to whisk often, scraping bottom of saucepan to prevent burning, until the flour mixture (roux) is golden brown, about 2 minutes.

  5. In a slow, steady stream, whisk milk into the roux. The roux will thicken immediately. Continue to whisk continuously to prevent lumps. After about 1 cup of milk has been slowly added, you can add the rest of the milk to the pot at one time.

  6. Whisking often, cook the milk mixture until it thickens, about 8 minutes. Do not let the milk boil. The sauce will coat the back of a wooden spoon when it's thickened enough.

  7. Remove from heat and whisk in the grated cheese until the sauce is smooth. Season to taste with more salt and pepper if necessary.

  8. Pour sauce over cooked macaroni and stir well to coat. Pour the macaroni and cheese into the greased pan and top evenly with panko mixture.

  9. Bake until top is golden and bubbling, about 30 minutes. Remove from oven and allow to sit for 5 minutes before serving.

 

The macaroni and cheese can be made ahead, put in the baking dish and cooled completely before refrigerating. Do NOT top with panko until ready to bake. When cooking from cold, it may take longer than 30 minutes to heat through and be lovely and bubbly.

 

Recipe adapted from Garrett McCord from Epicurious

Next article Fennel & Tomato Panzanella with Home-made Ricotta by Alice Zaslavksy

Comments

Carolyn Woodland - November 18, 2022

Thanks for a great recipe idea for an old favourite. Will be trying it this weekend.
Keep up the good advice.
C.

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