I'll announce the winner of the contest tonight I promise, but in the meantime if you want to make KILLER Mac & Cheese - here you go!
1 pound elbow macaroni (I like the ones w/ridges to hold more sauce) - cook it al dente
1 T Olive oil
2 T Butter
3 T Flour
1-1/2 C WHOLE milk (don't skimp - use whole)
3 C shredded sharp white cheddar cheese (like Cabot from reg. grocery)
1/2 tsp nutmeg (I barely use a smidge - NOT 1/2 tsp)
1/4 tsp ground cayenne pepper (more or less as desired - I use a little less)
Salt to taste - the cheese is very salty so you won't need much.
Pasta needs to be ready, but still HOT, BEFORE making sauce.
Heat a medium-size dep skillet over medium heat. Add oil and butter. When butter melts into the oil, stir in the flour. Gently cook, whisking flour & butter together until smooth and flour has had a chance to cook (2 - 3 minutes). Slowly add milk while continuing to whisk. Gently bring milk to a bubble while stirring frequently. Allow the milk to thicken a bit then stir in 2 C of cheddar cheese a handful at a time. Season sauce with nutmeg, cayenne, and (I add) black pepper - taste & see if it needs salt. Add cooked pasta to sauce and coat completely by turning it over and over in the cheese sauce. Transfer to a baking dish, top with remaining cheese, and pop it under the broiler until the cheese is bubbly and browned.
It's really easy and REALLY good!!!
Thanks Rachael Ray
Dang, now I'm starving!!!
I'll keep you posted!