Monday, March 26, 2012

Grown Up Mac and Cheese with Blue Cheese and Swiss Chard

I made this bread video and I was going to post it on Thursday no Friday okay on Saturday, for sure on Saturday. And on Saturday I tried. Youtube and I are having some issues. And it’s not even that interesting, five minutes of bread making. But maybe I think that because I’ve seen it so many times I don’t need my recipe anymore. So that’s coming, I want to take some still shots so I need to bake some more bread. But in the meantime we still have to eat and I’m trying out a homemade lightbox in an attempt to up my game photo wise.

Blue CHeese Mac and Cheese with Garlic Swiss Chard
Tangy Grown Up Mac and Cheese with Swiss Chard and Spring Rabb
Ever since I baked that Spinach Tart I have been craving Macaroni and Cheese.  I resisted until I couldn’t resist anymore. This take has tons of veggies and was made with high fiber pasta. The Swiss chard tucked in the middle is a pleasant compliment to the tangy blue cheese. Served with spring rabb lightly sautéed in homemade chicken broth.

The recipe is a guess- based on recollection. I used ingredients in the fridge and pantry.

Blue Cheese Penne with Swiss Chard

Grown Up Mac and Cheese

2 ½ cups low fat milk
2 tsp butter
2 TBSP flour
1 heaping tsp country style Dijon mustard (a recipe for this will follow at some point)
About 1 cup shredded mozzarella
¼ cup American cheese (the secret cheese at a restaurant I worked at where everybody raved about our Mac and Cheese, it adds a creamy consistency you just can get from ‘real’ cheese)
½ cup blue cheese crumbled.
Fresh ground pepper to taste

1 bundle Swiss chard including most of the stems, chopped up fine
2-3 cloves of garlic
2 TBS homemade chicken broth

14-ounce package of Trader Joe’s high fiber penne pasta, cooked a minute or two less than instructed.

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.

Sautee garlic, chicken broth, and Swiss chard over a medium-low heat until chard is tender and most of the liquid evaporates- about 7 minutes. Set aside.

Melt butter, add flour and whisk until flour is completely coated. Slowly add milk, whisking constantly until smooth and sauce like. Add cheeses one at a time stirring until incorporated and creamy (reserving a little bit of blue cheese and mozzarella to sprinkle over the top) Salt and pepper to taste.

Add sauce to cooked pasta (I return the pasta to its cooking pot, you want a vessel large enough to stir it together easily)

Pour about ½ the coated pasta into a lightly oiled or non-stick 8X11 pan. Top with cooled Swiss chard mixture, then add the remaining pasta and any left over sauce.
Sprinkle the remaining blue cheese and mozzarella over the top and bake until bubbly and melty- usually about 15-20 minutes.

A layer of Swiss Chard adds color and tempers the bold flavor of the blue cheese.

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