FRESH Ideas: Macaroni & Cheese

TYLER (KYTX) - FRESH Ideas for Macaroni & Cheese 

Bechamel sauce is the base for homemade macaroni & cheese and once mastered it's easy to make yourself. It's also fun to try different varieties of cheeses.

In this recipe I used Italian cheeses. Try to combine a softer cheese with a harder cheese to ensure even melting. In another version I combined sharp English cheddar with Swiss gruyere for a stronger cheese flavor.

Goat cheeses and blue cheese would also be an interesting addition when combined with white cheddar or gouda.


Italian Macaroni & Cheese



1/2 pound dried elbow macaroni

Coarse salt and freshly ground pepper

3 tablespoons unsalted butter

1/4 cup all-purpose flour

3 cups whole milk

1 cup finely grated Italian fontina cheese

1 cup grated mozzarella cheese

1 cup Parmesan cheese, divided



Bring a large pot of water to a boil, then add pasta; salt generously and cook pasta to manufacturer's instructions. Transfer to a colander, rinse under cold running water, and drain well. Melt butter in a 4-quart pot over medium heat. Whisk in flour and cook, stirring with a wooden spoon, until bubbling but not browning, about 45 seconds. Add milk and whisk to combine. Bring to a simmer, stirring with a wooden spoon (scrape across the bottom and around edge of pot to prevent scorching), until thickened and smooth. Reduce heat to a simmer and cook for 20 minutes. Add fontina and mozzarella cheese and 1/2 cup Parmesan. Stir until completely melted and sauce is smooth. Season with salt and black pepper and stir to combine. Add pasta to sauce in a large baking dish and stir to combine. Top with the remaining Parmesan cheese. Bake at 350 degrees for 20 minutes until top is golden and cheese is bubbly.


FRESH Ideas with Christine Gardner can be seen each Tuesday at 5 p.m. on CBS19 and again on View a gallery of all the FRESH Ideas videos on Facebook: Christine Gardner Tyler Paper Food.



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