Thursday, April 29, 2010

Shells and Cheese

I have never liked box mac & cheese. Ever. Not even as a kid. I came to have a small appreciation for Velveeta Shells & Cheese, but not enough to actually buy it and make it for myself more than once every few years.

But home-made is something else. My mom always made a custard based mac & cheese using evaporated milk. I've made it Mom's way and I've made it with a cheese sauce. I prefer the custard.

Last night, I wanted mac & cheese and I was in a mood to experiment. I didn't have any elbow macaroni in the pantry, but I did have whole-grain shells. I always have a variety of cheese. I came up with something pretty fabulous, between my fridge and my pantry.

Ramped Up Shells & Cheese

6 oz whole grain medium shells
4 eggs
1 12 oz can evaporated milk
1/2 tsp dry mustard
1/4 tsp cayenne
1/2 tsp onion powder
1 c shredded sharp cheddar
1 c Sargento,s shredded Six Cheese Italian Blend
2 oz crumbled blue cheese
6 slices bacon, crumbled
4 Tbs salted butter, divided
1/2 c Italian seasoned bread crumbs
2 TBS grated Parmesan cheese

Cook pasta per package instructions. Prepare a 3 qt casserole by spraying with cooking spray. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Whisk together eggs, milk, and spices.

Place a layer of pasta in the bottom of the casserole. Dot with 1 Tbs butter, sprinkle with 1 oz crumbled blue cheese. Add 1/2 of the bacon and top with 1/2 cup each of the shredded cheeses. Repeat. Cover with egg mixture.

Mix together 2 TBS melted butter, bread crumbs, and Parmesan and spread over the top. Bake for 45 to 50 minutes.

Sorry I can't post pictures. I was so hungry when I finished, I didn't take time to find my camera.


MileHighBaker said...

This sounds great, and hubby is a mac & cheese person. Your way seems much easier than some others I've seen lately. Printing out now! Thanks.

webbie said...

Hope you enjoy!

Becky said...

That looks DE-licious. We will be trying it soon.

Thanks for sharing.