A Chef's Secret-Ingredient Macaroni & Cheese Recipe (Ready in Less Than 30 Minutes) by Chef Gigi Gaggero, Host of KSCU 103.3 FM LIVE Food Talk Radio S.F. Bay Area

Pasta Side Dishes
8 days ago
A Chef's Secret-Ingredient Macaroni & Cheese Recipe (Ready in Less Than 30 Minutes)

Yes, my family has a secret macaroni and cheese recipe, but I'm sharing it with you. Cook once, eat twice! This is a fantastic recipe to serve this Thanksgiving

This recipe has two secret ingredients that make it off-the-charts-good: Parmesan cheese and crushed red pepper flakes. Trust me, you won't be able to stop eating this macaroni and cheese side dish recipe

Cuisine: American
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 20 minutes
Total Time: 30 minutes
Servings: 4 to 6

Ingredients

  • 1 pound elbow macaroni
  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1/2 cup butter
  • 1/2 cup flour
  • 1 cup chicken broth or vegetable stock
  • 1 1/2 cups cream or nut milk
  • 4 ounces cheddar cheese
  • 4 ounces white cheese (I like cream cheese)
  • 1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon nutmeg
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon red chili flakes (optional)
  • 3 tablespoons grated Parmesan cheese, for garnish

Here's how you  make it:

  1. Cook macaroni to package directions. Drain and toss with olive oil. Set aside.
  2. In a large saucepan on low heat, melt the butter and flour together to make a roux. Mix and cook flour, but don’t brown. This will thicken your sauce.
  3. Combine cream with the stock. When roux is thick, pour to combine liquids in a steady steam while whisking out the lumps. Add more liquid as you stir to smooth out to a mac ‘n cheese-like consistency. The key is to work fast over low heat. The sauce will get tight and you’ll think you’ve made a mistake. Keep going! Keep consistently whisking at a steady pace. It’s OK to take the pan off the heat if you think it’s cooking too fast.
  4. Add cheese, salt and spices. Combine well. Adjust liquid if necessary. You will know it’s ready when it coats the back of a spoon and you can run your finger through it and it says clean.
  5. If you’re using the secret ingredients (red chili flakes and Parmesan) add them now.
  6. Add the cooked elbow macaroni. Stir to combine. Serve warm.

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Donna John
What other white cheese would you recommend, Chef Gigi Gaggero if you weren't a cream cheese fan?
Chef Gigi Gaggero, Host of KSCU 103.3 FM LIVE Food Talk Radio S.F. Bay Area
Any white cheese that is not too stinky! You can also only use Cheddar - or White Irish Cheddar or even a Mexican three blend for a little kick!
Elisa Schmitz, 30Seconds
Homemade mac & cheese by Chef Gigi Gaggero? It's what's for dinner! #yum
Chef Gigi Gaggero, Host of KSCU 103.3 FM LIVE Food Talk Radio S.F. Bay Area
Donna John ⤴️🐭 If I want an Adult flavor you can use Gruyère -- it's a German cheese that is sweet but slightly salty, so adjust seasoning - it also has a flavor that varies widely with its age. It is usually described as creamy and nutty when young, becoming more assertive, earthy, and complex as it matures - sorta like me ! 😳 Although I think I might be Nutty at any age ! Enjoy

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