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Thursday, April 26, 2012

Macaroni and Cheese with Cheez-It Herb Crumb Crust

My name is Lisa and I relate food to everything. Even friendship. Sometimes I come across a recipe and automatically think of someone and tons of memories come to mind. Even friends and colleagues. 

This recipe is for someone close to me. We've been friends for a long time. To sum it up, he's a stupendous friend, teacher, father, and husband. I am so glad to know him. I know that this recipe would be absolutely loved by him and his family. So, here it goes. B, this one's for you. I hope that you and your family are well.

1 pound penne pasta
1/2 box Cheez-it crackers
1 bunch fresh chives, chopped
1 bunch fresh flat-leaf parsley, chopped
2 tablespoons butter
2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
2 cups milk
1/4 cup grated aged Monterey Jack cheese
1/4 cup cheddar cheese
2 cups heavy cream
Freshly ground black pepper

Set the oven to broil. Add the pasta to a pot of boiling salted water and cook until al dente, 8 to 10 minutes.

Pulse the crackers in a food processor to a coarse consistency. Mix with the chives and parsley.

Whisk the butter and flour in a medium saucepot over medium-high heat until fully incorporated and bubbly. Add the milk and bring to a simmer, whisking the entire time. Whisk in the cheeses, a little at a time, until thoroughly combined. Add the heavy cream and season with salt and pepper.

Strain the pasta and mix with the cheesy sauce. Spoon into oven-safe baking vessels and top with the crumb crust. Place under the broiler until lightly toasted and bubbling, 3 to 5 minutes. Watch carefully so the mac doesn't burn.

Source: adapted from Food Network

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