Tuesday, May 18, 2021

The Diva’s Creamy Macaroni and Cheese

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I am a fan of Krista Davis’s “Domestic Diva” books, and have read every one of them. I have pre-ordered the next (The Diva Serves Forbidden Fruit), due to release on the 25th this month). I recently completed the current volume (#13), The Diva Spices It Up. One of the things I love about this series, in addition to the characters, setting, and darned good mystery is that recipes are provided at the back of the book for a lot of the food mentioned throughout the story. In this volume, one of those recipes was for Creamy Macaroni and Cheese. As a fan of mac & cheese, yet never quite finding a recipe that suits me, I had to try this one.

I don’t know about the hard copy, but if you have The Kindle version of this book, please be aware that the included recipe is wrong. There is a mention of cream cheese in the instructions, but none mentioned in the list of ingredients; at no time is there a mention of when to combine the pasta with the sauce (or even combining the pasta with the sauce at all); and, for my taste, there was too much salt. That said, this is the best macaroni and cheese that I have ever eaten. It is flavorful, creamy but not too creamy, and the crunchy topping adds that certain something that takes it over the top. I am not a fan of elbow noodles so I never keep them on hand, always substituting with
pipette. They’re much cuter for one thing, “pipette” is much more fun to say than “elbow noodles,” and they hold more of that delicious sauce.

Here is a cleaned up copy of Krista‘s recipe for Creamy Macaroni and Cheese. Follow it to the letter, and you will be in pasta heaven.

The Diva’s Creamy Macaroni and Cheese

Adapted from Krista Davis

8 oz. elbow macaroni*, cooked according to package
½ c.
½ c. freshly grated Parmesan cheese
4 T. unsalted butter
¼ c. flour
1 t.
garlic powder
1 t. smoked paprika
¾  - 1 t. Kosher salt
1 T. prepared mustard
2 c. whole milk
4 oz. cream cheese, cubed, room temperature
4 oz. shredded cheddar (shred your own, I’m not just kidding around here)
4 oz. shredded Colby cheese (not pepper jack, Colby Jack, Colby, shred it yourself)

Preheat oven to 400° F. Spray an 8” x 8”
baking dish** with nonstick spray (like Pam); set aside.

In a small mixing bowl, toss together Panko and Parmesan cheese; set aside.

After preparing the pasta, set aside to drain and make the sauce. In a large saucepan melt butter over medium high heat. Whisk in flour and cook until it turns amber in color and smells fragrantly nutty, 2-3 minutes. Continuing to whisk, gradually pour in milk. Add garlic powder, smoked paprika, salt, and mustard, and reduce heat to medium. Whisk occasionally until the mixture simmers at the edges and begin to thicken. Add cheeses, reduce heat to low, and stir with a wooden spoon until it has melted. Fold in drained pasta and turn into prepared dish.

Sprinkle Panko/Parmesan mixture over the top and bake for 20 to 25 minutes until edges are bubbly.

Generously serves 4 as a main dish; 6-8 as a side.

*I used

**You can also use a 1.5 quart casserole dish.


Linda said...

Thank you for providing the correct recipe. We are always on the lookout for a good mac and cheese recipe. My husband made my favorite years ago - a 5-cheese version - but he only made it one time!

Angie's Recipes said...

An ultimate comfort food! That golden crispy topping has me drool.

judee said...

This macaroni and cheese recipe looks exceptional. Thanks for the review of the book- what a great idea that they include recipes in the back..

jmac said...

I wish I lived close to you.....😋😋

Alycia Nichols said...

I could eat the whole 1.5 quart dish of this in one setting! I LOVE macaroni and cheese! It’s one of my favorite go to comfort foods!

bread&salt said...

Photos you shared in the post BEAUTİFUL! Presentation is BEAUTİFUL! Looks great and tasty.

kitty@ Kitty's Kozy Kitchen said...

I haven’t heard of these books, Pattie, but they sound wonderful. Thank you for the correct version. I LOVE a good Mac and Cheese.