Macaroni and cheese made for an adult palate. Asiago, Fontina and Bleu cheeses make the sauce very special.
I’ve wanted a totally red baker for quite a long time. Finally found some and treated myself.
If you’re wondering what red bakers have to do with all of this, I always wanted them because that baker would become the one I always made macaroni and cheese in. Nothing was more appetizing to me than seeing a great-looking macaroni and cheese in a red vessel.
Call me crazy–and you’re probably right–but I’m an incurable bakeware addict and like special pans for certain dishes.
I didn’t want to make my go-to Classic Cheddar Bacon Macaroni & Cheese this time. I wanted something a little more sophisticated. The original was one I found on BHG when I was picking recipes to pin to one of their boards. That recipe contained chicken and used different shaped pasta.
Since I didn’t have any cooked chicken on hand I couldn’t add any, but wanted another addition in the dish so it wasn’t “plain.” Not that it’d be bad plain–it’s wonderful!
I had some button mushrooms in the crisper that I wanted to use. What I did was sear these mushrooms in a bit of butter so they’d have a really deep flavor. Added to the casserole, they made it more interesting, they tasted great in it and it kept the meal totally meatless.
Since it’s meatless the way I made it, it’s a perfect Lenten dinner. And Lent is right around the corner!
- 8 oz uncooked casserole-sized elbow macaroni
- 8 oz fresh button mushrooms
- 5 tbs butter, divided
- 1 clove garlic, minced
- 3 tbs flour
- 3 cups milk
- ½ tsp salt
- ¼ tsp white pepper
- 1 cup shredded Asiago cheese
- 1 cup shredded Fontina cheese
- ½ cup crumbled bleu cheese
- ½ cup Panko bread crumbs
- Cook macaroni as per package directions EXCEPT cook for about 2-3 minutes less so that the macaroni is slightly firm in the center. Drain and set aside.
- Saute mushrooms in 1 tbs of the butter until mushrooms are brown and seared. Set aside
- Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. Lightly spray or grease a 11 x 7-inch deep baking dish (about 3-inches high. If you don't have a deep 11 x 7, use a 13 x 9).
- In a large (3-4 qt) saucepan or Dutch oven over medium heat, melt 3 tbs of the butter and add the minced garlic. Cook the garlic about 3 minutes or until it becomes aromatic. Do not brown the garlic.
- Stir in the flour and cook for 1 minute.
- Gradually add the milk while stirring to prevent lumps. Cook, stirring frequently until sauce begins to get thicker and begins to bubble.
- Gradually add the cheeses, stirring until the cheeses are entirely melted.
- Add the mushrooms and macaroni, stirring to blend well.
- Place in prepared pan.
- Melt the remaining 1 tbs of butter in a small saucepan. Add panko crumbs and toss to coat.
- Sprinkle buttered crumbs on top of casserole.
- Bake for 25-30 minutes, or until crumbs are golden brown. Let the casserole sit for 10 minutes before serving