Macaroni and Cheese, Rich and Creamy
The original of this recipe was found in the 17 Oct 2009 issue of Family Circle magazine and the combo of three cheeses makes for a very comforting meal!
- Ready In:
- 1 (16 ounce) box penne rigate
- 3⁄4 lb sharp cheddar cheese, shredded
- 1⁄2 lb gruyere cheese, shredded
- 1⁄2 cup asiago cheese, shredded (or Parmesan)
- 3 tablespoons unsalted butter
- 3 tablespoons all-purpose flour
- 2 cups milk
- 1⁄2 teaspoon onion powder
- 1⁄2 teaspoon salt
- 1⁄8 teaspoon cayenne pepper
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.
- Coat a 2-quart broiler-safe baking dish with nonstick cooking spray.
- Bring a large pot of lightly salted water to boiling; add penne.
- Cook penne for 6 minutes; drain.
- In a large bowl, toss together the cheddar, gruyere and asiago cheeses; set aside.
- Meanwhile, in a medium-size saucepan, melt unsalted butter over medium heat; whisk in flour until smooth and slightly bubbly.
- In a thin stream, whisk in the milk; stir in onion powder, salt and cayenne pepper.
- Bring to a boil over medium-high heat; reduce heat and simmer 3 minutes.
- Remove from heat and whisk in 2-1/2 cups of the cheese mixture.
- In a pasta pot, stir together the cooked penne and the cheese sauce.
- Pour half of mixture into the prepared baking dish.
- Sprinkle with a generous cup of the cheese.
- Spoon in the remaining penne and top with the remaining cheese sauce.
- Bake for 20 minutes.
- Increase the oven temperature to broil and cook another 3 minutes or until the top is lightly browned.
- Cool slightly before serving.
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Does this freeze well? If so, would I want to freeze before or after baking it? Thanks! I made a few tweaks based on what I had on hand -- mostly used cheddar, with a bit of mozzarella and parmesan. Had very little onion powder, so used what I had, plus a pinch of garlic powder, salt, and pepper. Had no cayenne. Added steamed cauliflower to the pasta, and put some bits of ricotta in the bottom layer. Tasted amazing.