The Gift of Gouda…
I know the holidays are just around the corner because gift baskets keep pouring into the office and we keep divvying the goodies up among us. Yesterday’s meat and cheese basket left me with a big round of Smoked Gouda. Not quite as exciting as the delicious jar of Raspberry Marmalade I got last week or the giant bag of pistachios that I left with on Monday. The Gouda has sat on my desk for an entire day now and I just keep looking at it and thinking, “What am I suppose to do with you?”
Well, this is what I’m going to do with it:
Gouda Mac & Cheese
1 lb package short pasta (penne, elbow macaroni, etc)
4 tablespoons butter
4 tablespoons all-purpose flour
4 cups milk
½ teaspoon salt
½ teaspoon fresh ground black pepper
½ teaspoon paprika
8-oz block sharp white cheddar cheese, grated and divided (about 2 cups)
8-oz block smoked gouda cheese, grated and divided (about 2 cups)
Cook the pasta according to package directions, set aside.
Melt butter in a large saucepan over medium-low heat; whisk in flour until smooth. Continue whisking and cook for 2 minutes. Gradually whisk in milk. Whisking constantly, cook for 5 minutes or until thickened. Reduce heat to low and stir in salt, black pepper and most of the cheese, reserving about a cup of cheese.
Pour the pasta in a lightly greased 8 x 11 x 2 baking dish. Spoon the cheese sauce over the pasta, stirring lightly to even out the sauce in the pan. Sprinkle the top with the remaining cup of cheese and the paprika.
Bake at 400° for 20 minutes or until bubbly.