I really, really love food. And thankfully, I love to cook almost as much. One thing I have enjoyed doing over the years as we have been on our “real food journey” is to take favorite recipes and work to make them more healthy and nourishing. At home, I don’t really cook with anything processed – I tend to cook most things from scratch just so that I know what I am actually eating and feeding my family!
Here’s one of our family’s favorites – homemade mac and cheese! It is a “stove top” version so the pot you make it in is the pot you serve it in – saves on dirty dishes! Plus, this recipe is very versatile – I’ve changed it up a bit by adding in some ham and broccoli to make it more filling – or you can throw in any other veggie you can think of too! It’s delicious!
The original recipe came from this book called “American Classics”
I really love this cookbook because they’ve tried and tested hundreds of recipes and have come up with the best combinations that are tried and true. And these recipes are better for your when you use real food ingredients! I highly recommend this book! No one can have too many cookbooks, right?!
So, here is the revised recipe from the book – their title is Stovetop Macaroni and Cheese:
1 cup fresh bread crumbs (I usually take the ends of a homemade loaf of bread and rip/cut into little pieces)
pinch of real salt (or use garlic salt!)
1 1/2 Tablespoons real butter (if you are local to West Michigan, Moo-ville butter is the BEST - it is creamy, tasty and you know it is good butter when it is naturally really yellow – real butter is yellow and full of vitamins – not the pale, white stuff that is in stores! And yes, butter IS good for you!!! Click HERE to read how/why!)
Macaroni and Cheese:
2 large farm fresh eggs (from pastured chickens is best)
12 oz whole milk (I use farm fresh raw milk)
1/4 tsp hot pepper sauce (such as Tabasco)
2 teaspoons real salt, divided
1/4 tsp ground black pepper
1 tsp dry mustard, dissolved in 1 tsp of water
1/2 lb noodles of your choice – lately I’ve been using the Tinkyada Brown Rice Elbows with Rice Bran, 16-Ounce Packages (Pack of 12)Tinkyada brand that is wheat/gluten free – I also usually use more like 8 to 12 oz of noodles
4 Tablespoons of real butter (I use Moo-ville Butter)
3 cups of shredded cheese (I’ve used cheddar, but a combo of any kind could be good!)
1. For the topping, I melt the butter in a saute pan and then add the bread pieces and sprinkle with garlic salt. I saute until they are golden brown and a little crunchy (and try not to eat them all or you won’t have any for your topping!)
2. For the macaroni and cheese, first mix the 2 eggs and 12oz milk, along with the hot pepper sauce, 1/2 teaspoon salt, pepper and mustard mixture in a bowl. Set aside.
3. Bring 2 qts of water to boil in a heavy pot or Dutch oven. Add the 1 1/2 tsp of remaining salt. Add macaroni and cook for a total time that is 2 minutes LESS than what the box says (ex. if it says to cook for 10 minute, only cook for 8). Drain and then return macaroni to the pan and add the 4 Tablespoons butter and toss to melt.
4. Next, turn burner to low/medium and add about half of the egg/milk mixture and 2 cups of cheese. Stir gently to combine and melt cheese. Then add the rest of the cheese and egg/milk mixture, gently stirring until cheese is melted and sauce thickens and is creamy – this may take a few minutes (and the reason why you’ll want to initially cook your noodles a few minutes less than what is on the box). Top with toasted bread crumbs and serve immediately!