It’s a comfort food. It’s a side dish for traditional barbeque. It’s a kids meal. It’s so many things and an all american dish with the earliest versions going back to colonial times. This “grown up” version uses Gruyer and Fontina for the cheese sauce instead of the more traditional cheddar but you can certainly change up the ingredients to suit your needs and tastes. The basic method is the same no matter what cheese you use.
- 8 oz gruyère – shredded
- 8 oz fontina – shredded
- 4 oz cheddar – shredded and kept separate
- 1 pound macaroni elbows
- 2 Tbsp Worcestershire sauce
- 1 whole egg – beaten
- 1/4 cup butter
- 1/4 cup all purpose flour
- 2 1/2 cups whole milk
- 1 Tbsp dry mustard
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 1/2 tsp seasoned salt
- 1/2 tsp ground black pepper
- 1/4 tsp fresh ground nutmeg
Preheat your oven to 350 degrees.
Boil pasta for 5-7 minutes. You want to make sure and under cook the pasta.
Melt the butter in a heavy bottomed pot.
Add flour into and whisk to combine. Cook for 5 minutes while whisking continually. Make sure to whisk continually so as not to burn the roux. If you burn the roux you need to start over.
Add the milk and mustard powder. Stir to combine and continue to cook for 5 minutes until mixture starts to thicken. Reduce heat to low.
Beat egg in a medium heat proof bowl. Yeah yeah, the bowl I’m using isn’t heat proof.
Add 1/4 cup of the sauce into the beaten egg stirring constantly to temper the egg, bringing the egg up to temperature while making sure you don’t scramble the egg.
Add the tempered egg into the sauce and stir.
Add the gruyère and fontina and stir until the cheese is melted and the mixture is smooth.
Add in the Worcestershire sauce, salt, pepper, seasoned salt and nutmeg.
Stir until smooth. Taste and reseason as necessary.
Add your undercooked macaroni. Stir to combine and add to a greased 9×13 baking pan.
Cover with reserved cheddar cheese. Bake at 350 for 20 minutes until top is melted and bubbling.
Serve, a plate or a bowl is your choice. I know this wasn’t enough for me but the crispy edges were amazing.