Sunday, March 20, 2011

Margarita Mac and Cheese

Ever since we ate at the Jus' Mac restaurant, I've been itching to try some grown-up mac n' cheese of my own. I love margarita pizza, so I figured margarita mac and cheese must be good too. I was right!

Recipe adapted from here.

8 oz macaroni or similar pasta (I used rotini)
1 tbsp chopped fresh basil (plus extra for garnishing before serving!)
2-3 cups mozzarella cheese
1 can diced tomatoes, drained
2 tbsp olive oil
1 clove garlic, minced
1 tbsp flour
2 cups milk

1) Preheat oven to 375. Cook macaroni as directed on the package. While macaroni is cooking, prepare the sauce.
2) Heat olive oil in a medium saucepan over low heat. Add garlic and cook 1-2 minutes, or until garlic is fragrant.
3) Whisk in flour, 1/2 tsp salt, and 1/4 tsp pepper. Cook over low heat, stirring until the mixture is smooth and bubbly.
4) Remove from heat and stir in milk. Heat to boiling, stirring constantly. Let boil for one minute. Stir and set aside.
5) Drain pasta and mix it with the drained tomatoes. Place half in the bottom of an ungreased 2.5 quart casserole dish. Sprinkle with about 1/2 tsp salt, about 1/8 tsp pepper, half the basil, and half the cheese.
6) Add the other half of the pasta-tomato mixture. Sprinkle with another 1/2 tsp salt and 1/8 tsp pepper, plus the rest of the basil and cheese.
7) Pour the sauce over the macaroni.
8) Bake covered for 30 minutes, then uncover and bake 15 more minutes.
9) Add fresh basil on top before serving.