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Creamy mac and cheese with a serious kick!
Preheat oven to 375 F.
Heat milk over medium heat in a saucepan.
Meanwhile in a large non-stick saute pan (or high sided skillet) melt butter over medium heat. Once butter is melted whisk in flour. Whisk for about 1 minute.
Slowly whisk warm milk into the butter/flour mixture. Continue whisking until milk bubbles and starts to thicken, about 5 minutes.
Meanwhile, start boiling water for the pasta (I use the same pan I warmed the milk in and just rinse it out) and cook 2 minutes below what the package directions recommend.
After whisking milk and it thickens, remove pan from heat. Stir cream cheese and 1-1/2 cups Beecher’s cheese (save 1/2 cup for top) into the milk until it melts. Stir in salt, black pepper, nutmeg and cayenne pepper. Keep it on low heat.
Drain and rinse pasta and add into the pan with the cheese sauce. Then pour it into a lightly greased 9×13 baking dish. Sprinkle with remaining 1/2 cup of Beecher’s cheese. Then sprinkle on the panko bread crumbs. Spray with cooking spray (like Pam) to help the bread crumbs brown.
Bake for about 30 minutes, or until top starts to brown.
I can honestly say this fresh pasta recipe works every time. It rolls out beautifully, tastes great, doesn’t blow up in the water, doesn’t break when you make ravioli and the dough can be made ahead and kept in the refrigerator!
I make pasta a lot, mostly ravioli. I make a bunch and freeze them and it makes getting dinner on the table so easy! Feel free to substitute spinach, basil, chard or kale … but ramps are in season!
Nancy is the Coupon Clipping Cook, which means she not only has an astounding number of recipes to share with us (her TK recipe box is busting at the seams!) but she's also got loads of money-saving tips in her blog (she worked at a grocery store for a number of years, so she knows her stuff). She has some pretty amazing creations, like Roasted Garlic Potato Soup and Nutty Coconut Chicken. Go check them out!
Heather is a Texas native and the blogger behind Heather's Dish. She's mom to Weston, wife to Nate, and they live in Little Rock, Arkansas with their two "stubborn and saucy" dogs Bunker and Keira. In her blog, she shares her photographs, random musings (serious and silly alike), and all kinds of scrumptious recipes---and not just evil variations of her favorite mac and cheese. Her enviable TK recipe box is a testament to that. Go see for yourself!