1 16-oz bag Large (or regular) macaroni
1 Stick of butter
1/3 cup flour
1/2 tsp. Salt (or more to taste)
1 tsp Ground Pepper Melange (or less to taste)
1/2 of a sweet, white onion, minced
2 Serrano Chiles, stems removed, minced (mince the seeds also for heat, or discard)
1 7-oz can chopped Hatch Green Chiles (mild)
1 cup whole milk
2 cups Chicken Broth
1 8-oz pkg Shredded Cheese (*Mexican Blend), plus ADD an extra 1/2 cup of Pepper-Jack Cheese, grated
Preheat oven to 400*F.
In a large pot, boil water and cook macaroni to “al dente” as instructed on the package. Drain off the water and place macaroni in a buttered baking dish large enough to fit, or use two baking dishes (one for enjoying shortly and one that you can freeze for later, or one you can give away to your busy daughter, a sick friend, or the elderly gentleman next door). Set macaroni aside while you make the sauce.
In a large saucepan on medium high heat, place the stick of butter and let it melt. Add the flour and whisk together until blended. Cook, stirring occasionally for about 5 minutes. Add the salt and pepper. Add the onion, Serrano, and green chiles. Let cook until onion is tender. Add milk and chicken broth, whisking to make sure it doesn’t have any lumps. Let it cook a few minutes to thicken and then remove from heat. Add the *cheese and stir to blend. (* I like the HEB Mi Comida Mexican Cheese blend with Cotija, Manchego, Asadero, Muenster, Oaxaca, and Quesadilla cheeses, and then I add a little pepper-jack as well.)
Pour the cheese sauce over the macaroni and use your spoon to make sure it completely seeps down into the macaroni, every last millimeter of it.
Lay a piece of foil loosely over the top and place the dish in preheated oven. Bake for 20 minutes. Remove cover and bake another 10 minutes. Adjust cooking time if using two pans – it won’t need to bake as long. Make sure it is bubbling all around the outsides and a little bit in the center, that’s when it’s done!
Goes very well with a nice crock pot roast (I like to make two – one to eat right away and one to freeze and use for other dishes later, like Stroganoff, Roast Beef Hash Casserole, Beef Quesadillas, Veg Beef Soup, BBQ Beef Sandwiches, SOS, Loaded Baked Potatoes, etc.). I like to pull mine so it soaks in all the juices.
Pot Roast and Mac & Cheese make just a Jim Dandy plateful of down home comfort food on a busy back-to-school night! Just add whatever vegetable you wish. I’m a big fan of Butter Beans, which are super easy-peasy. Just pour the frozen baby lima beans (the little green ones that come in a bag in the frozen section) into a pan of about 2 or 3 inches of boiling, salted water. Let the beans cook, covered for a few minutes in the rapidly boiling water until tender (the instructions are probably on the package, I’ve just never looked). As soon as they are just tender (I don’t like them mushy), drain them and toss a half a stick of butter in with them and let it melt and soak in. That’s it. That’s the way I like them. They can keep warm on a low burner of the stove, swimming in that creamy butter for a little while, if you like. Grind a little pepper melange on top and serve when you’re other dishes are ready.
“Every moving thing that lives shall be food for you. I have given you all things, even as the green herbs.” Genesis 9:3