Marianne's Mac-n-Cheez is a recipe from the Nickelodeon cookbook Stir, Squirt, Sizzle included in the "Gobble and Gulp" section of the book. The ingredients provided serve four to six.
- 6 tablespoons unsalted butter
- 1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
- 4 cups milk
- 1 1/4 teaspoon cayenne, or to taste
- Salt and pepper to taste
- 1 pound elbow macaroni
- 3 cups coarsely grated extra-sharp Cheddar cheese
- 1 1/3 cups freshly grated Parmesan cheese
- 1 cup fresh bread crumbs
- Preheat the oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit and butter a long, shallow baking dish
- Melt the butter in a big saucepan over low heat. Add the flour slowly while whisking until it is completely combined.
- Turn up the heat just a bit and add the milk, slowly pouring it in as you whisk. Once it starts to boil, reduce the heat and add the mustard, cayenne, salt and pepper.
- Let the mixture simmer, whisking it occasionally, until it begins to thicken. This should take about 2 minutes.
- Meanwhile, cook the macaroni by following the instructions on the box, undercooking it the teensiest bit.
- Combine the macaroni, the sauce, the Cheddar cheese, and one cup of Parmesan in a big bowl. Mix it all up and pour it into the baking dish.
- In a smaller bowl, mix the remaining 1/3 cup Parmesan with the bread crumbs and sprinkle it on top of the macaroni and cheese.
- Place the baking dish in the oven and bake for 25 to 30 minutes, or until it is so golden and bubbly you can't bear to wait another minute.
- Use margarine instead of butter.
- Use low-fat milk and cheese.