Prep 30 mins
Cook 1 hr 8 mins
From Chef Ilene Rosen of City Bakery in New York City.
- 6 tablespoons butter (plus extra for the baking dish)
- 1⁄4 cup cornbread, crumbs (or more, depending on pan size)
- 1 lb elbow macaroni
- 1 quart whole milk
- 6 tablespoons flour
- kosher salt
- fresh ground black pepper
- 1 1⁄4 cups grated gruyere cheese
- 1 1⁄4 cups grated mild white cheddar cheese
- 1 1⁄4 cups grated grana padano (or Parmesan cheese)
- Preheat the oven to 350°; lightly butter a 3 1/2 quart casserole dish or a 9 x 13-inch baking dish.
- Sprinkle the crumbs in a single layer on a baking sheet; bake 10-15 minutes or until golden brown; set aside.
- Bring a large pot of salted water to boiling; cook the macaroni al dente (8-10 minutes); drain macaroni; then place in a large bowl.
- Bring milk to a simmer in a small saucepan over med-high heat.
- In a medium saucepan over med-low heat, melt the 6 tablespoons butter; add in the flour; mix well using a wooden spoon or spatula.
- Cook, stirring constantly, for 3 minutes.
- Whisk in hot milk and continue whisking until smooth.
- Increase heat to medium and cook, stirring continuously, until the mixture thickens enough to coat the spoon.
- Season with salt and pepper; strain through a fine strainer.
- Add the sauce to the macaroni; add in 1 cup each: Gruyere, Cheddar, add Grana Padano; stir to mix well.
- Taste, and season with salt and pepper if needed.
- Pour the macaroni mixture into the casserole dish; sprinkle with remaining cheese.
- Sprinkle the toasted cornbread crumbs evenly over the casserole.
- Cover with foil; bake on the middle shelf about 20 minutes or until heated through.
- Remove foil and continue baking about 10 minutes or until top is golden brown.
- Let stand 10 minutes before serving.
Super delicious! I thought this was going to take forever b/c of all the steps, but I managed to make it and bake it on a weeknight after work. Unfortunately, I didn't have any cheddar, only smoked Gouda, so I substituted that instead, and it came out great. The proportions are all exactly as I would hope, and honestly, if you don't have the 35 mins to bake, the mac and cheese straight from the pot is just as good. It was thick and creamy, exactly what I wanted and enjoyed by all.
I made this recipe for the My-3-Chefs Game (November 2009) and my theme was Mac nâ€™ Cheese. I prepared all 3 mac n' cheese recipes for a dinner group and had them review. This recipe was a favorite of everyone. The next time I will use only 12 ounces of macaroni.