spicy mac and cheese
There are some crazy things happening with the colors in this photo that I can’t even begin to address:
But I needed it to show you a couple of things. Like…crackly, cheesy crust. Creamy interior flecked with bits of tomatoes and peppers.
Here’s another one:
Oh my. That’s not helping, is it?
What if I promise you that that big ol’ pot o’ goo transforms into a magical, creamy, spicy, ever-so-addictive-though-you-can’t-quite-put-into-words-why pot of deliciousness given a half hour in a hot oven? Trust me, it’s one of my favorite foods.
Pasta and cheese will rarely do you wrong.
Spicy Mac and Cheese (adapted from Chipotle Macaroni and Cheese via Cooking Light)
yields 6 one cup servings
1 tablespoon butter
2 tablespoons all purpose flour
1/2 cup finely minced onion
1/2 cup finely chopped green bell pepper
1 clove garlic, minced
1 (14.5 ounce) can diced tomatoes and green chiles, undrained
2 cups (8 ounces) shredded sharp cheddar
1 cup cottage cheese
1 cup milk
1/4 cup (1 ounce) parmesan cheese, grated
1 large egg, lightly beaten
4 cups hot cooked elbow macaroni (about 2 cups uncooked)
Bring water to a boil for macaroni and preheat oven to 350. Cook macaroni for about 8 minutes, then drain and set aside.
Meanwhile…if you have a 2 quart pan that can go from stove to oven, put it over medium-high heat. If not, have a 2 quart baking dish sprayed with no-stick ready to go. Add butter to the pan, then onion, bell pepper, and garlic; cook about 5 minutes or until onion is softened, stirring frequently. Sprinkle in flour and cook 30 seconds, stirring constantly. Reduce heat to medium and add tomatoes/chiles. Cook for a few minutes until thickened, stirring often. Add cooked pasta, most of the cheddar, cottage cheese, milk, parmesan, and egg, stirring to combine thoroughly.
Top with remaining cheddar (herbed breadcrumbs are a good alternative) and bake for about 30 minutes, until bubbly. Let sit at room temp for about 15 minutes before digging in.