Sunday, April 14, 2013

Better Baked Mac & Cheese for #SundaySupper Movie Night

Are you a foodie when it comes to movies?

Food and movies go hand-in-hand. Some movies have food as a star or prominent highlight. This week the #SundaySupper crew is all about the movies and the recipes they inspire. Whether it's the whimsy of the genius rodent in Ratatouille, the close-to-home blogger saga of Julie & Julia or the heartwarming feastaval of Big Night, food has never been so entertaining! This event is hosted by Heather from girlichef - Thanks Heather!

My recipe for Baked Mac & Cheese is actually something I never made before I started working at the school. Growing up, M&C meant breaking out the blue box of Kraft Dinner and mixing the powdery, neon cheese into limp noodles. Granted, the stuff was delicious enough in it's own right, especially day-old and mixed with spaghetti sauce, leftover chopped turkey and frozen peas. But homemade mac? A whole other animal, and frankly, an equally good (if not a tiny bit better) cheesy meal for the whole family when you have a few extra minutes to bake the dish while making a salad and setting the table. The sauce takes less time to make than the pasta takes to cook, and the baking is more a formality than anything, to brown the crumbs and get that nice crispy crust.

Comfort

I took my inspiration from the movie Soul Food, about the interweaving lives of a southern family that always convened for a Sunday dinner. Since mac and cheese is the epitome of that cuisine for me, and was one of those meals that really does remind me of the whole family, I thought it was perfect for this week's event.

Check out what the rest of us are watching, cooking and eating this week!

Toast (bready things)

No Reservations (soups and salads)


Today's Special (fish, chicken, beef, and pork)


Forks Over Knives (veggie-heavy dishes and sides)


Udon (pasta and noodles)


Just Desserts (sweet treats)


Bottle Shock (beverages)


Sunday Supper Movement

Join the #SundaySupper conversation on Twitter on Sunday, April 14th to talk all about movies that have inspired us to head into the kitchen - and the food that comes from that inspiration (7pm EST)!  We’ll tweet throughout the day and share recipes from all over the world.   Follow the #SundaySupper hashtag, and include it in your tweets to join in the chat. Check out our #SundaySupper Pinterest board for more delicious recipes and food photos.

Better Baked Mac & Cheese
Serves 36
2 tbsp salt (for pasta water)
2 kg elbow macaroni
6 cups whole milk, divided
½ tsp pepper
½ tbsp dried parsley
1 tsp garlic powder
¼ tsp salt
1 tbsp butter
¼ cup cornstarch
1 kg shredded cheddar cheese, divided
1 cup dry Italian breadcrumbs or crushed Goldfish crackers
  1. Preheat the oven to 375F and grease 2 large casserole dishes.
  2. Boil a large pot of water and add salt. Add macaroni and cook 10 minutes, stirring occasionally. Drain well and return to pot.
  3. While pasta is cooking, heat 5 cups of milk in a saucepan.
  4. Stir in the pepper, parsley, garlic powder, salt and butter.
  5. Whisk the cornstarch with the remaining 1 cup milk until smooth, then add to the hot milk and cook until slightly thickened.
  6. Stir in all but 1 cup of the cheese until melted.
  7. Pour over the pasta in the pot and fold in completely.
  8. Divide pasta between the casserole dishes, top with reserved cheese and breadcrumbs.
  9. Bake for 10 minutes, until cheese melts and casserole is bubbly.
Amount Per Serving
Calories: 352.0
Total Fat: 11.7 g
Cholesterol: 34.3 mg
Sodium: 240.0 mg
Total Carbs: 44.3 g
Dietary Fiber: 2.8 g
Protein: 15.9 g