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Thursday, January 10, 2013

Tomato Macaroni & Cheese

When I was growing up, this is the way my Mother made our homemade Macaroni & Cheese.
I won't make it any other way.
If fact, if there are no tomatoes in my Mac & Cheese, I'll pass.
Imagine creamy, cheesy macaroni and then get a bite of a warm, juicy tomato.
1 lb. elbow macaroni
1 28 oz. can diced tomatoes*
6 Tbsp. unsalted butter
1/2 cup flour
1 tsp. dry mustard
4 cups milk
1 cup half & half
4 cups mild cheddar cheese, shredded (save 1/2 cup for topping)
2 cup sharp cheddar cheese, shredded
Salt and Pepper to taste
Buttered bread crumbs
Cook macaroni according to package directions until still slightly firm, about 7 minutes.
Drain and return to pot.
Add entire can of tomatoes, including juice, and stir to combine; set aside.
Preheat oven to 400 degrees F.
In a medium saucepan, melt butter over medium heat.  Add flour and stir to combine.  Cook for 2 minutes to cook the raw taste out of the flour.  Add mustard and salt and pepper.
When mixture comes to a boil, remove from heat and add cheeses.
Add cheese sauce to macaroni and tomatoes in the pot and stir well.
Pour into a large baking dish.
At this point, I sneak a few tablespoons before it goes into the oven.
For the buttered bread crumbs:
Melt 3 Tbsp. of unsalted butter in a small saucepan.  Add one cup of coarsely grated bread crumbs (from stale bread).  Add 1/2 tsp. salt and 1/4 tsp. of black pepper.  Saute until golden.
Top with breadcrumbs and reserved cheddar cheese.
Bake for 20 minutes or until bubbly.
*Mom used a can of whole tomatoes, cut up without the juice.  If using, cut tomatoes over the macaroni to get some of the juice.
Sharing with:  The Country Cook - Weekend Potluck

4 comments:

  1. Looks great! I'll have a big bowl and a nap please:@)

    ReplyDelete
  2. Happy New Year! yum Patti, this looks really good!

    ReplyDelete
  3. I love making homemade mac and cheese with tomatoes - it is my favorite. Never tried it with the mustard though and that sounds delicious. I do, however, add diced onions to mine for an extra little flavor boost.

    ReplyDelete

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