Mac and Cheese

This is the real deal. Homemade and delicious (although sadly, not low calories). Perfect for the chilly nights ahead.

Prep time: 15 minutes
Cook: 30 minutes
Makes: 6 servings

  • 1 pound dried fusilli
  • 6 cups low-fat milk
  • 3 tablespoons cornstarch
  • 1 teaspoon dry mustard
  • 3/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/8 teaspoon nutmeg
  • 1/2 cup freshly grated Pecorino Romano
  • 3 cups of shredded extra-sharp Cheddar cheese*
  • 1/4 c panko (Japanese style bread crumbs)
  • 1 tbsp butter melted

1. Preheat oven to 400°. Prepare pasta according to package directions. (Err on the al dente side.)
2. Meanwhile, in large glass bowl, heat milk in microwave on high 2 minutes. Pour milk into a 4-quart saucepan, then whisk in cornstarch, mustard, salt, and nutmeg until well blended. Continue to whisk frequently and cook on medium 8 to 10 minutes or until mixture thickens slightly and boils. Cook 1 minute longer, whisking constantly. Remove from heat. Stir in cheeses and continue to stir until cheese melts.
3. In large mixing bowl, combine pasta and cheese sauce until well mixed. (Clean-up Tip: I use my Dutch oven to cook the milk/cheese combo and then add the noodles into that. Saves washing another bowl.)
4. Spoon into a shallow 3 ½-quart ceramic or glass baking dish. Combine panko and melted butter and mix well. Stir in remaining cheese until well combined and sprinkle over top of macaroni and cheese. Bake, uncovered, 25 minutes or until hot and bubbling and bread crumbs are golden brown.

* Cook’s Note: You can improvise on the cheese. One of my favorites ways to make this recipe is with 1 1/2 cups gruyere and 1 1/2 cups of smoked gouda. So yum.