One of my Cleveland tweeps dlayphoto [@dlayphoto] posted a link to a homemade macaroni & cheese recipe from Jonathon Sawyer [@chefsawyer] and Chef's Widow [@chefswidow]. The recipe looked awesome and with some tweaks I took it from a simple kid-friendly meal to a Super Bowl feast.
- 2 tbsp. olive oil
- one medium onion, finely diced
- kosher salt
- two 6.5 oz. cans of mushroom pieces and stems, drained and coarsely chopped
- 1 tbsp. horseradish mustard
- 1/4 tsp. cayenne
- a pinch of dill
- 1/4 tsp. garlic powder
- 1/4 tsp black pepper, finely ground
- 2-1/2 cups chicken or vegetable stock
- 3 cups lowfat or skim milk
- 1/2 cup Wondra® flour
- one 15 oz. container of part skim and/or low fat ricotta cheese
- 8 tbsp. grated Parmesan cheese
- two 8 oz. pkgs. of extra sharp cheddar cheese, shredded
- 1 lb. of andouille sausage, sliced into quarter-inch coins, then cut into half-moons
- 1/2 cup panko crumbs
- 2 tbsp. unsalted butter, melted
- 1/2 tsp. paprika
- 1 tsp. parsley
- one 16 oz. pkg. of rigatoni
Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Heat olive oil in large saucepot on medium heat, add diced onion with a few pinches of kosher salt and cook until softened, about five minutes. Add mushrooms and cook for another five minutes, stirring frequently.
Increase heat to medium-high, add mustard, cayenne, dill, garlic powder, black pepper, stock and milk, and bring to a boil. Add flour, stirring constantly for two minutes. Then add ricotta and stir until fully incorporated. Follow with Parmesan and cheddar, stirring until smooth. Reduce heat to medium-low and simmer for about 10 minutes, stirring every few minutes.
Meanwhile bring six quarts of water to a boil in a large pot, add a tsp. of kosher salt then the rigatoni and cook until al dente. Drain and return to pot, add sliced andouille and cheese sauce, gently fold mixture until rigatoni is thoroughly coated.
Pour mixture into 13 x 9 Pyrex baking dish, combine panko, butter, paprika and parsley, and sprinkle over top. Bake in oven for 25 minutes until top is lightly browned. Rest for five minutes before serving.