One of my favorite comfort foods made by Ina with cheddar and gruyere cheese and topped with fresh tomatoes.
- kosher salt, to taste
- vegetable oil, if desired
- 1 lb elbow macaroni or 1 lb cavatappi pasta
- 1 quart milk
- 8 tablespoons unsalted butter (divided)
- 1⁄2 cup all-purpose flour
- 12 ounces gruyere cheese, grated (4 cups)
- 8 ounces extra-sharp cheddar cheese, grated
- 1 tablespoon salt
- 1⁄2 teaspoon fresh ground black pepper
- 1⁄2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
- 3⁄4 lb fresh tomato (4 small)
- 1 1⁄2 cups fresh white breadcrumbs (5 slices, crusts removed)
- Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
- Drizzle oil into a large pot of boiling salted water. Add the macaroni and cook according to the directions on the package, 6-8 minutes. Drain well.
- Meanwhile, heat the milk in a small saucepan, but don't boil it. Melt 6 tablespoons of butter in a large (4 qt.) pot and add the flour. Cook over low heat for 2 minutes, stirring with a whisk. While whisking, add the hot milk and cook for a minutes or two more, until thickened and smooth. Off the heat, add the Gruyere, cheddar, 1 tablespoons salt, pepper, and nutmeg. Add the cooked macaroni and stir well. Pour into a 3 quart baking dish.
- Slice the tomatoes and arrange on top. Melt the remaining 2 tablespoons of butter, combine butter with fresh breaf crumbs, and sprinkle on top. Bake 30-35 minutes, or until the sauce is bubbly and macaroni is browned on the top.