Saturday, May 9, 2009

The Best Macaroni and Cheese You'll Ever Eat

If you do this one right, you'll want it every week. I took some liberties with Jamie Oliver's recipe, but the original is probably still on his website.

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Lightly oil a baking pan with olive oil.

16 oz elbow macaroni
Breadcrumbs (Make your own out of stale bread, it's easy and better tasting.)
12 Sweet Grape Tomatoes
1 clove of garlic
1/4 cup of fresh basil
Sea salt and black pepper
1/2 cup of grated Parmesan cheese
1 cup of heavy whipping cream
1 tablespoon of red wine vinegar
1/4 teaspoon fresh grated nutmeg
Chunks of fresh mozzarella, (low moisture part-skim works, but a ball of whole milk mozzarella is better)
1 tablespoon of fresh thyme leaves
Extra virgin olive oil

Cook your macaroni in a pot of boiling salted water. Break up the bread and zip it in your food processor to turn it into breadcrumbs. Set aside.

Place your tomatoes and garlic in the food processor, add a couple pinches of salt and a quick grind of pepper. Puree. Add 1/4 cup of Parmesan, cream, vinegar and nutmeg. Puree until it looks like a smooth sauce.

Once the macaroni is cooked, drain it in your colander and then add it to your baking dish. Pour the sauce over the macaroni and mix together. Throw your chunks of mozzarella on top, sprinkle with the remaining Parmesan and thyme, and then add the breadcrumbs over that. Drizzle olive oil over the top of everything. It'll give you a nice crunchy cheese crust.

Bake 20-25 minutes or until the top is golden.

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