I shouldn't be surprised that there are more than 600 recipes for this dish. After reading many, many of them, I have come to the conclusion that this one has it's place here at Zaar. The sauce is smooth and creamy, with little pockets of melted cheese throughout. I hope you like this as much as I do. Cooking time includes the making of the sauce and baking.
- 1 cup pasta, with nooks & crannies for holding the sauce
- 2 tablespoons butter
- 1⁄4 teaspoon salt
- 1⁄4 teaspoon ground black pepper
- 1⁄2 cup onion, chopped finely
- 2 tablespoons flour
- 1 cup milk
- 1 cup sharp cheddar cheese, grated
- 1⁄3 cup sharp cheddar cheese, cubed
- 1⁄2 teaspoon chives, chopped, mostly for colour
- 1⁄4 teaspoon red pepper flakes (optional)
- Preheat oven at 350°F.
- Cook pasta in boiling salted water until al-dente. Drain and set aside.
- Heat the milk in the microwave, on high for 1-1/2 minutes.
- In a medium saucepan, melt butter. Add salt, pepper and chopped onion. Sauté on medium heat, until the onion is transparent and soft, but not brown.
- Sprinkle the flour on top, and allow the butter to absorb some of it before stirring.
- Add the hot milk in 3 additions, stirring constantly. The mixture will get thick very quickly.
- After the final addition of milk, continue heating the mixture, on medium heat, stirring constantly, until thick and bubbly.
- *Remove from heat* and stir in the grated cheese, chives and red pepper flakes.
- Add the drained pasta and mix well.
- Fold in the cubed cheese.
- Pour into two greased onion soup bowls.
- Bake for 20 - 25 minutes.
- Allow to cool a bit before serving.