It is so delicious, however, that I had to share it with you all. I do not have pictures (cooking with two boys running around takes enough out of me, I can barely NOT burn the butter - never mind snapping photos). I also have to confess that the recipe MOSTLY comes from www.foodnetwork.com - but I have made a few changes to bring down the fat content AND make it EXTRA special. Oh and MOST importantly, the kids LOVE it!!
Bake Mac and Cheese with Ham ala Crazy Momma, Crazy Town USA (Serves 6-8)
- 1/2 pound elbow macaroni
- 3TB Olivio
- 3 TB flour
- 1 TB powdered mustard
- 3 cups skim milk
- 1/2 cup yellow onion, finely diced
- 1 bay leaf
- 1/2 t paprika
- 1 large egg
- 12 ounces SHARP cheddar cheese, shredded
- 3 cups leftover ham, diced
- 1 t kosher salt
- black pepper
- 3 TB Olivio
- 1 cup panko bread crumbs
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
In a large pot of boiling water cook the pasta to al dente.
While the pasta is cooking, in a separate pot, melt the butter. Whisk in the flour and mustard and keep it moving for about 5 minutes. Make sure it is free of lumps. Stir in the milk, onion, bay leaf and paprika. Simmer for 10 minutes and remove the bay leaf.
Temper in the egg (if you don't know how to temper in an egg - I didn't - click here). Stir in 3/4 of the cheese. Season with salt and pepper. Fold in the macaroni and ham into the mix and pour into a 2-quart casserole dish. Top with remaining cheese.
Melt the butter in a saute pan and toss the bread crumbs to coat. Top the macaroni with the bread crumbs.
Bake for 30 minutes. Remove from the oven and rest for 5 minutes before serving.
ENJOY and let me know what you think!