Wednesday, October 30, 2013

Carroty Mac-n-Cheese

Katherine was a bear to try and teach to breast feed.  She would cry for up to an hour before latching on, if she even did that.  Stubborn?  I'd say so, just like her father. ;)  That said I still wanted to breast feed her so I turned to pumping as the next best option.  With Katherine at 5-months old I am still pumping four times a day and supplementing with formula as needed.  All this to say that I often times have long periods of time with nothing to do but stare off into space - at least when I pump before my bambinos wake up in the morning and after they go to bed at night.  I quickly tired of Facebook and checking email so I began reading recipes in search of new, yummy and fairly quick dishes to make.  Weelicious provided a link to this recipe on a list of their favorites from 2011 and it has proven a fast favorite with the two and under crowd in our house.  Hope you enjoy it as much as we did!

Whatcha Making Wednesdays: Carroty Mac and Cheese
(Three Many Cooks)
Makes 6 servings

2 cups whole wheat macaroni
2 1/2 cups coarsely grated carrot (about 8 small)
3 cups grated sharp cheddar cheese
1/4 cup (1/2 stick) unsalted butter, cut into pieces
3/4 cup sour cream
1/4 cup whole milk
2 large eggs
1 teaspoon kosher salt
3/4 teaspoon mustard powder
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1/4 cup finely grated parmesan cheese

  1. Preheat oven to 400° F and grease an 8-inch square baking pan. Arrange a rack in the top third of the oven.
  2. Cook macaroni according to package instructions in a large pot of salted boiling water; add carrot 3 minutes before pasta is finished cooking; drain well.
  3. While pasta is hot, stir in all but 1/2 cup of the cheddar and the butter. In a bowl, whisk together the sour cream, milk, eggs, salt, mustard powder, and pepper. Fold mixture into the pasta.
  4. Scrape the mixture into the prepared pan. Sprinkle the remaining cheddar and the parmesan over the top. Bake until the casserole is firm to the touch and golden brown, about 30 minutes.

What Else?(from Three Many Cooks)
  • If you’re grating your cheddar cheese in the food processor, you don’t have to wash out the machine before grating the carrots. Or vice versa.
  • This is one of those macaroni and cheeses with an eggy custard base that puffs as it cooks, and is cut into squares to serve, like a casserole, as opposed to that gooey, creamy, stove-top béchamel sauce version. I know that some people have strong opinions about proper mac and cheese (I’m an equal opportunist myself), but thought I’d let you know what you’re getting.
  • You can vary the cheese to give this rather plain (if tasty) dish more personality. Gruyère, aged Cheddar, pecorino, and aged Gouda will all add a sophisticated allure that will raise it above mere kids’ food.

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