Peacock Macaroni and Tillamook Cheese

July 23, 2009

 The Man’s BFF, Gary sent this recipe along to The Lady…

“I think of good old Mac and cheese as a core comfort food.  It’s a dish that is good to have when you’re not feeling well.  Actually, it’s good any old time!  It seems to go with everything particularly seasonal vegetables.  Years ago, I had some left over garlic butter from making garlic butter.  On a whim, I used it in making the cheese sauce for this recipe.  It added wonderfully to the flavor of this recipe and I’ve used it ever since.”

 Ingredients:

 4 Tbsp – margarine or butter

1 cup – diced onion

1 Tbsp – minced garlic

3 Tbsp – all-purpose flour

2 Cups – milk

¾ lb – Extra-sharp aged Tillamook cheddar cheese, grated

½ tsp – White pepper

½ tsp – Ground nutmeg

1 tsp – oregano, crushed

Sea salt & fresh ground pepper (optional)

8 oz – Farfalle, Rotini or Fusilli pasta

Oil cooking spray

Parmesan cheese, grated

Fresh parsley, minced

 

Preparation:

 In a skillet, heat 2 Tbsp. margarine; add onion and sauté until onion becomes translucent.  Add the garlic for a minute or two.  Keep warm and set aside. 

  1. In a large saucepan, heat 2 Tbsp. margarine.   Stir in flour and cook being careful not to brown.  Remove from heat and whisk in milk until thoroughly blended.  Heat on medium and cook stirring, until mixture begins to thicken.  Remove from heat; add all but a couple of ounces of the cheese, and the seasonings.
  2. Cook the pasta according to package directions.  Stir into the sauce after draining. Taste and adjust seasoning as necessary.  Spoon mixture into a sprayed baking dish, about 9 x 13.  Top with remaining cheddar cheese, Parmesan cheese and parsley.
  3. Bake in pre-heated oven at 400 F, for 30 minutes or until mixture is bubbling and top is golden.  Makes 4 to 6 servings.
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