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Friday, April 8, 2011

Mexican Macaroni and Cheese

This is a snappy recipe. It's great to make when you need to get dinner on the table quick. I came up with this recipe using pretty much all items that I can find in my own pantry at any given time. I always, always stock diced green chiles, diced jalapenos, canned corn and pasta. Enjoy and have a happy weekend! In case you're wondering it's snowing right this minute at my house...again.
Recipe (yield 8-10 servings):

16 oz bag uncooked pasta, any kind you prefer
3-4 cups shredded cheese, I like monterey jack because it melts so well
1 15 oz can of corn
3/4-1 cup whole milk or half & half, if you use 2% or 1% milk your sauce will be substantially runnier
1 7 oz can diced green chiles (make sure you don't buy the small can)
1 4 oz can diced jalapenos, only use 1 teaspoon (I've found that this amount gives it just a tiny hint of kick and flavor. If you want more heat, add 2 or 3 teaspoons)
2 1/2 tablespoons salt, divided
pepper to taste

Fill a large pot half way full with water. Add to the water 2 tablespoons of salt. Bring to a boil over high heat. Add pasta and cook according to package instructions. While the pasta is cooking, make the sauce. I like to make mine in a large skillet. Dump the corn, chiles, 1 teaspoon diced japapenos, and 3/4 cup milk. Turn heat to medium. Stir and allow everything to heat through for 3-5 minutes. When the milk begins to bubble around the edges, add shredded cheese in batches. Stir mixture and allow each batch to completely melt before adding the next. I do this about three times. Your noodles will finish cooking sometime around now, so remove them from heat and drain in a colander. When the noodles have finished draining, put them back in the same pot you used to boil them in. Set aside. The sauce should be about done at this point. Give it a good stir and make sure the cheese is all melted. If you feel like the sauce is too thick you can add a little more milk in to thin it or if you feel like it is too thin then add a little more cheese (you can't go wrong). Taste and add salt and pepper to your liking. It won't need much pepper, but it will need some salt. Start with 1/2 tablespoon and go from there. When the sauce is seasoned to your liking, pour all the sauce directly over the waiting noodles in the pot. Stir to combine and coat. Serve immediately. A green salad goes great on the side, tossed in a light vinaigrette. Enjoy!

image by Briana

1 comment:

Kar said...

This looks really yummy! I've add green chilies to my regular mac n cheese. But the addition of corn and jalapenos sounds perfect!