Buttermilk Mac ‘n Cheese

Buttermilk Mac 'n Cheese

You need:

  • 8 oz. elbow macaroni
  • 8 oz. shredded cheddar cheese
  • 8 oz. buttermilk
  • 2 tbsp flour
  • 2 tbsp butter
  • 2 tbsp panko or regular bread crumbs
  • 4 sprigs fresh marjoram
  • 1/8 tsp smoked sweet paprika
  • salt and pepper to taste

How to make it:

  1. Preheat oven to 350°F.
  2. In a large pot, bring three quarts of water to a boil. Add salt to season. Cook macaroni until al dente. Remove from heat, drain, briefly rinse under cold water, and drain again.
  3. While the macaroni is cooking, heat the butter in a pan over medium heat. Once melted, whisk in the flour until well combined. Reduce heat and gently cook, whisking constantly, until the mixture just begins to darken. This is a roux.
  4. Mix in 6 oz. of the shredded cheese, the buttermilk, and the paprika. Stir until the cheese is mostly melted and then turn off the heat. Add 3 of the 4 sprigs of marjoram and continue stirring for five minutes.
  5. At this point the cheese should be completely melted and the marjoram should have flavored the sauce. Remove the marjoram and stir in the cooked pasta. Mix well to combine and season with salt and pepper.
  6. Pour into your cooking vessel (I used two small and shallow ovenproof bowls). Top with the remainder of the cheese and the panko. Cover loosely with foil and bake for 20-30 minutes.
  7. Remove foil to brown the top. You may want to move the dish closer to your broiler if you want, but watch it closely as the breadcrumbs can very easily burn.
  8. Remove from oven and sprinkle with chopped marjoram from the 4th sprig. Allow to cool for a few minutes before devouring.
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