Light Home Cooking: Mac and Cheese Recipe

I know this Mac and Cheese posting is my third recipe of this month. But I needed an evergreen post in order to lock myself in a room (as much as possible) over the last couple of weeks to finish my third feature film script. I’m writing this as of March 13, so here’s hoping I got there.

We may be coming to the end of winter, but Mac and Cheese is one of the best comfort foods around, any time of year. This is a lighter version of it, and uses mostly fresh ingredients, so you can actually eat it without worrying about, you know, a heart attack or something. It tastes good straight out of the oven, reheated or even cold at a barbecue.

Ingredients:
12 oz uncooked macaroni (or any short pasta will work, even ziti)
1/2 cup fat-free sour cream
12 oz fat-free evaporated milk
8 oz low-fat cheddar-jack, cheddar or Colby cheese
1 Tbsp Dijon mustard
1/4 tsp table salt
1/4 tsp black pepper
1/8 tsp ground nutmeg
2 tbsp dried bread crumbs, Italian style
2 tbsp grated Parmesan cheese, or cheese mixture with Parmesan in it

Preheat oven to 350ºF.

Cook pasta according to package directions without added fat or salt; drain and transfer to a large bowl. While pasta is still hot, stir in sour cream; set aside.

Heat milk in a small saucepan over medium heat until tiny bubbles appear just around the edges (known as scalding). Reduce heat to low, add cheese and simmer until cheese melts, stirring constantly with a wire whisk, about 2 minutes; remove from heat and stir in mustard, salt, pepper and nutmeg.

Add cheese mixture to pasta; mix well. Transfer to a 4-quart casserole dish.

Combine bread crumbs and Parmesan cheese; sprinkle over the mac and cheese.

Bake, covered with glass lid, until top is golden, about 30 minutes.

mac and cheese