Tasty Tuesday {gluten free mac + cheese plus* and a confession!}

Let’s get the confession out of the way first: until a week ago, I’d never made mac and cheese! I know, right? Seems crazy! I’ve eaten my fair share and I think my favourite may have been at Cafeteria in New York. Although maybe it’s favoured status is buoyed by the fact that I was in New York spending time with my Little Sister. Either way, great mac and cheese, great memories.

A week ago my Little Sister came over for dinner. It was a cold winter night and I’ve been having one of those brain snaps where I can’t seem to think of what to make for dinner. They happen occasionally. It was just before pay day so the cupboards were a little on the Old Mother Hubbard side of things. I did have some gluten free pasta and there seemed to be a lot of cheese in our fridge. So I thought to myself: how hard can it be to make mac and cheese? Boil some pasta, make a cheese sauce – not too difficult. My first attempt was good {you know, in my humble opinion} but I decided it would also be another good vehicle for getting some vegetables in {thus the plus* in the title}, so this week I tried that theory … with resounding success. The only thing that was missing this week was the crumbs on top as I forgot to restock my rice or quinoa crumb supply over the weekend!

You know you’re onto a good thing when Love Bug is all but finished and you ask if she’s had enough and the response is not enough mac cheese mumma, it’s delicious!

macncheese

So, what do you need?
2 cups gluten free macaroni
3-4 tablespoons unsalted butter
half a brown onion
Garlic {one or two cloves, more if it’s cold and flu season!} minced
2.5 cups of milk {will work best if the milk has some fat in it so opt for low fat milk rather than skim; we use organic low fat and it works well}
2 cups of Italian grated cheese {whatever flavour you like best, or mix your flavours}
half a cup of light cream cheese
half a cup of crumbs {we use rice crumbs or quinoa crumbs}
nutmeg
Salt & pepper to taste
1 medium zucchini, diced
half a cup of corn {fresh if it’s in season}
1 cup of small variety tomatoes, quartered

Okay, now what do you do with it?
Pre heat your oven to 160C {320F}.

In a heavy skillet pan brown 1 tablespoon of butter then add your zucchini, corn and tomato and cook for around 5 minutes. While they are in the skillet, cook your macaroni according to instruction, but not for the full duration suggested {eg if cooking time is 11 minutes, I’d cook it for 8 so that it doesn’t end up too soggy}.

Once your pasta is cooked, drain and set aside along with vegetables.

Wipe your skillet out with paper towel and put in the remainder of your butter until it starts to foam. Add garlic and onion and heat until clear. Add flour, one tablespoon at a time, whisking constantly until it forms a roux. It will be lumpier than a regular roux because of your onion and garlic.

Add your milk slowly {approximately half a cup at a time} until it forms a nice paste. Stir through cream cheese until combined then add one and a half cups of your grated cheese and stir until melted. Then dive in face first, oops I mean season to taste with pepper and nutmeg. As a guide, I use approximately 1 teaspoon of nutmeg but this is to personal taste.

Add your pasta and vegetables and stir through until well coated with your sauce. Pour into an oven proof dish, top with bread crumbs and your final half cup of grated cheese.

Bake for 30-40 minutes until nice and brown on top.

Try not to burn your mouth eating it out of the oven dish!

2 Comments Add yours

  1. CM says:

    Thanks for sharing the recipe, always looking for new gluten free meals to make for my boys! 🙂

  2. theloverlist says:

    Yummo. Sounds DE-LIC-IOUS.

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