Ok I know I said this before, but this is truly my husbands favorite meal. If he was on a desert island, and had one last meal macaroni and cheese would be it. He can eat it as a meal, as a side dish, as an appetizer…for him macaroni and cheese fits all occasions. Now when I first started making it, as usual, I tried to make it a little fancy…I added garlic and onions, and omitted the velveeta. Big mistake. Now I make it very standard, but very deliciously. Lots of heavy cream, lots of cheese…be warned, this is not a diet meal! BUT my husband loves it. He asks for it all the time, and practically licks the spoon when I make it.
Notes: I think for macaroni and cheese, you always need a little velveeta (I know I’m not supposed to say that, but its true!!) Also, I think block cheeses work better then pre-shredded bags. That may be simply in my mind, but its my theory, and its worked so far for me. Also, some people prefer very creamy macaroni and cheese, and some people prefer their pasta to be a little more sturdy. At different times in the recipe, I like to reserve cooking liquid and cheese sauce, so that you can decide how creamy you want your macaroni and cheese to be.
Gouda Macaroni and Cheese
- 3 tbsp. butter
- 3 tbsp. all purpose flour
- 4 c heavy whipping cream
- 1 c gouda cheese, shredded at home
- 1.5 c sharp cheddar cheese, shredded at home
- 1/2 c velveeta, shredded at home
- 1 16oz macaroni noodles
- In a heavy bottomed pot, melt the butter on medium-high heat. Once completely melted, add the flour and stir so that all the flour is mixed with the butter. If the butter is not all absorbed add a little more butter, and if the roux is too thick add a little more butter. This mixture should be about the consistency of applesauce.
- Reduce heat to medium, and add the cream directly to the pot, and stir to mix.
- Now for the fun part, add the cheese. All three cheeses, all at the same time and stir so all the cheeses have melted. Once fully blended, remove approximately one cup of cheese sauce from the pot and set aside.
- In a large pot, add a box of macaroni noodles to heavily salted boiling water. Cook the pasta until it is al dente. The pasta should not be soft, because it is going to absorb some of the liquid from the cheese sauce. Reserve approximately two cups of the pasta water, and using a strainer, drain the remaining water from pasta.
- Add half the pasta to the cheese sauce, and stir completely. Continue to add pasta to the cheese sauce until the sauce to pasta ratio is what you want. If you want to make the sauce creamier, add some of the reserved cheese sauce. If you want the cheese sauce to be thinner, add some of the reserved pasta water. There are lots of options here.
- Once the pasta is the way you like, plate and serve.