First of all I'd like to say whenever I bake something, I without fail, burn myself.
That didn't happen this time.
Also, this was my first time ever making "real mac and cheese."
Usually I use this:
with a little dijion, and it turns out pretty good.
But I was looking through a collection of old magazines and saw this:
and thought I had to make it. So that begin my adventures with Mac and Cheese, and the first time I've ever used a recipe. What can I say, I learned to cook by watching(mostly food network!)
The first thing I did was cut red peppers into inch(ish) sized pieces and boil them with a little garlic until they were soft.
Those smelled awesome as they were cooking.
While that was going on I toasted some panko breadcrumbs with a tiny bit of butter.
The recipe called for golden brown, but they didn't get quite there because I was afraid they were going to burn. So I pulled them off the burner and mixed them with about two tablespoons of butter, and a 1/4 cup of parmesan.
It browned up later when I baked it.
After that I added some very very finely chopped roasted red pepper from a jar and 1/4 cup of the jar's juice to the boiled red pepper along with a cup of sharp cheddar, a cup of mozzarella, a quarter cup of cabot white extra sharp cheddar, and a good spoonful of chili paste. The recipe called for peppadew but I live in a hick town, and the grocery store person hadn't even heard of peppadew.
Then I mixed it for awhile (the recipe called for a food proccessor, which I don't have for some ungodly reason, and I highly reccommend you do that if you don't like chunks of red pepper.
This is what the mix looked like when I was done:
Yes, that is a horrible picture. I was afraid the mac and cheese would turn out watery, but it dried up quite nicely.
The recipe called for cooking the noodles until tender, but I cooked them until al dente, while the noodles where cooking I buttered my cast iron baking dish:
Then I put the noodles and sauce in the pan and topped it with the panko bread crumb mixture from earlier:
After about thirty minutes at 350 degrees fahrenheit, this is what I pulled out of the oven:
My mistake was topping it with parmesan half way through cooking, and yes those are breadcrumbs you see on the bottom of the picture.
No, I didn't eat all of it, there is still a good half a pan in my fridge.
Anyhow, it was pretty good, and a lot better than "normal" mac and cheese. I think if I had used the peppadews it would of had a sweetness that would have counteracted the slight spicyness of the red pepper. I might make it again.
Below are the original and my recipes,
Let me know if you try one(or both) recipes and how they turn out in the comments section.