Wednesday, January 8, 2014

Creamy Brie Mac n' Seven Cheese with Toasted Breadcrumb Topping

Creamy Brie Mac n' Seven Cheese with Toasted Breadcrumb Topping
There are a few dishes, in life, that we are constantly searching for "the best" of. I've done it many times, mainly with my chocolate chip cookies, tinkering with it just ever-so-slightly until perfection has been attained. I also do it with southern pimento cheese, fudgy brownies, and mac n' cheese. People rave about Martha Stewart's recipe, but although it was great, it was still missing something. But the other week, I came across this idea to use BRIE in the mac n' cheese. OMG I love Brie. I love it plain, I love it on sandwiches, I probably would eat it off the ground (if no one was watching). So, to toss something so utterly creamy & smooth into mac n' cheese, I just thought it was stunningly brilliant. A simple Béchamel sauce is made, but then is amped up with sharp white cheddar, fontina, havarti, gruyere, + parmesan cheese. That's a full cast of characters, y'all!! Ain't nothing wrong with that. I love this mixture of cheeses because they all are different in taste and texture (or melt factor, as I like to call it). Every single one plays a crucial role in this pasta dish, so don't leave one out... ya'hear. On top, I put some homemade breadcrumbs with butter and garlic. This gives the dish a great contrast of texture as well. All who tried this mac, raved about it. Especially my two year old niece, who can sometimes be picky. So all you mommies out there, this is kid friendly, yay. Anyway, make this now, while it's still super chilly outside and enjoy a big bowl of it by the fire. It'll be the perfect night!! Enjoy :)
creamy brie cheese + toasted breadcrumbs, yum :)
For the Topping:
3T Unsalted Butter
2 Cloves of Garlic, Finely Minced
1 ½C Toasted Bread, Pulsed into Bread Crumbs

For the Béchamel:
4T Unsalted Butter
¼C AP Flour
1C Heavy Cream + 2C Warm Milk
¼t Mustard Powder, Cayenne, Salt, & White Pepper

For the Mac n’ Cheese:
1lb Small Pasta (elbow, corkscrews, shells, etc)
1C Sharp White Cheddar Cheese, Shredded
1C Fontina Cheese, Shredded
1C Havarti Cheese, Shredded
1C Gruyere Cheese, Shredded
6oz Brie Cheese, Rind Removed + Cut into Small Cubes
½C Freshly Grated Parmesan Cheese

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Spray a baking dish with nonstick spray.
2. Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Boil the pasta until al-dente. You want it to have a bit of bite. It will finish cooking in the oven. Drain well.
3. For the Béchamel: While the pasta boils add 3 tablespoons butter to a medium skillet and melt. Add the garlic and sauté 30 seconds then throw in the homemade breadcrumbs and toss to coat.
4. Toast the crumbs for 3-5 minutes, stirring frequently to avoid burning. Once the crumbs are lightly toasted remove form the heat and set aside.
5. In the same pot you boiled the pasta, melt the remaining 4 tablespoons butter over medium heat. Whisk in the flour. Reduce the heat to medium-low and let cook/bubble for 1 minute, stirring once or twice to avoid burning. Gradually whisk in the milk and raise the heat up to medium-high. Bring the mixture to a boil, whisking frequently until the sauce has thickened, about 2-3 minutes. Remove from the heat and stir in all of the cheese, mustard powder, cayenne, salt and pepper. Stir until the cheese is fully melted. Stir in the pasta and transfer to the prepared baking dish.
6. Evenly sprinkle on the toasted crumbs and place the baking dish on a baking sheet.
7. Bake for 20-30 minutes or until the crumbs are golden brown and the sauce is bubbling. Remove from the heat and let it sit for 5-10 minutes.

1 comment:

  1. Girllll! I have to try this! You know us Atlanta Divas love us some Mac&Cheese! I'm actually using your site to make my grocery list lol!