Baked Macaroni and Cheese

Background and History:

Baked macaroni and cheese is a beloved comfort food with roots in Italy. While the exact origin is debated, it gained popularity in the United States during the late 18th century. This dish combines pasta, usually elbow macaroni, with a creamy, cheesy sauce and is baked until golden and bubbling, creating a satisfying and indulgent meal.

Ingredients:

  • 2 cups elbow macaroni
  • 2 cups shredded sharp cheddar cheese
  • 1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese
  • 3 cups milk
  • 1/4 cup butter
  • 2 1/2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 1/2 cup bread crumbs
  • 1 pinch paprika

Serves: 4-6

Preparation Time: 15 minutes

Cooking Time: 30 minutes

Instructions:

  • Cook macaroni according to the package instructions. Drain.
  • In a saucepan, melt butter or margarine over medium heat. Stir in enough flour to make a roux. Add milk to roux slowly, stirring constantly. Stir in cheeses and cook over low heat until cheese is melted and the sauce is a little thick. Put macaroni in a large casserole dish and pour sauce over macaroni. Stir well.
  • Melt butter or margarine in a skillet over medium heat. Add breadcrumbs and brown. Spread over the macaroni and cheese to cover. Sprinkle with a little paprika.
  • Bake at 350 degrees F (175 degrees C) for 30 minutes. Serve.

Nutrition Facts: (Per serving)

  • Calories: 440
  • Total Fat: 22g
  • Saturated Fat: 13g
  • Cholesterol: 60mg
  • Sodium: 620mg
  • Total Carbohydrates: 42g
  • Dietary Fiber: 2g
  • Sugars: 8g
  • Protein: 19g

Notes:

  • Customize your baked macaroni and cheese with additions like crispy bacon, diced tomatoes, or sautéed onions.
  • Leftovers can be reheated or repurposed into mac and cheese balls or sandwiches.

Allergy Warning:

  • Be cautious of any dairy, wheat, or gluten allergies among your diners. Adapt the recipe as needed to accommodate any dietary restrictions or allergies.
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