Coast Cooking

Coast Cooking: Make your own macaroni and cheese

What is a good barbecue without an equally great side dish or two? 

Potato salad and coleslaw are probably the top two sides served at barbecue joints, but my favorite is macaroni and cheese. There is just something about the way a zingy barbecue sauce and the creamy macaroni and cheese go together. 

Please, please do not use the kind that comes in the box. It is so easy to make your own, and the more love you put into it, the more you will get out of it. 

The recipe below is basic, but consider adding mascarpone cheese, or using Gruyere cheese, the king of all melting cheeses. You also might want to add a little kick to the recipe, so think about adding some diced, hot peppers. Remember, a recipe is just a suggestion.

MACARONI AND CHEESE

1 pound elbow macaroni

6 tablespoons flour

3 cups milk

1 cup cream

16 oz white cheddar cheese

1 cup panko

1 stick butter

1-2 cloves crushed garlic

White pepper

Preheat oven to 350 F. Follow the package direction to cook the pasta. Melt half the butter in a sauce pot, add the flour and stir to incorporate. Slowly add the milk and cream, whisking all the time. Add the cheese, and simmer just to melt. Add the remaining butter to a sauté pan, add the garlic and cook 3 minutes. Remove the garlic and discard. Add the panko and stir to cover and slightly brown. Add the pasta to a greased baking dish, pour over the sauce, mix, the top with the panko. Bake until browned and bubbly.

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