Wednesday, 5 October 2011

Mealtime Mashup

French Onion Soup Mac & Cheese

I know.. WTF... what am I thinking? I know... You must think I'm crazy....

...Crazy Genius! I know! 

Who doesn't LOVE French Onion Soup?! 

Who doesn't LOVE Mac & Cheese?!

So, Poof! my favourite mealtime mashup!

Now, let's be honest, I'm not even going to pretend this is even kind of healthy. Ingredients like Flour, Butter and Cheese are unavoidable (I refuse to make this dish without either! Sister needs a Roux!) but I substituted some things to make this dish slightly easier to digest. Gluten Free Pasta instead of the regular stuff. Unsweetened Unflavoured Almond Milk (I LOVE Earth's Own Almond Fresh-Tastes like milk but not!) Remember, It's ok to be bad, once in a while... Serve with something super healthy, avoid dessert that night and hit the gym!

One big sweet onion, cut in half and sliced seriously thin (Mandolin Time!)
Splash of Canola Oil
Butter (have a stick on hand, but you'll need less)
2 heads of roasted garlic (See my old post about roasted garlic)
1/3 cup AP Flour
2 cups Milk (I used unsweetened Almond milk-but regular milk would work)
2 HUGE spoonfuls of Dijon
3 cups of Gruyere Cheese shredded
1 1/2 cups Extra Old Cheddar shredded
1 teaspoon Worcestershire Sauce
1 teaspoon of Cayenne (to taste, I used more)
1 teaspoon of Smoked Paprika
1 teaspoon of nutmeg
salt & peper to taste (Leave the salt to last and taste the food before you add it in, you cheese may be salty enough)
3 ish cups of short pasta (I used Gluten Free Penne) (Reserve the pasta water, like a couple cups, you may need it)
6 slices +  of Sourdough bread, crusts cut off, ripped up into tiny pieces, toasted lightly in the oven

Preheat your broiler

Put a big pot of water to boil, once boiling, cook up the pasta of choice to almost al dente, according to the package directions. Try to do this at the same time as making the sauce if you can. 

In a big high sided frying pan, put all the onions in on medium heat with the lid on, stirring occasionally. If it starts burning, turn the heat down, once it starts sticking a bit, add a splash of Canola and scrape up the goodness off the bottom. 

Once it's caramelized and brown, add the roasted garlic cloves from two heads of garlic

Add 3 Tablespoons of butter. 

Once melted somewhat, add the flour and stir it up to cook off the flour and incorporate everything together, crushing any whole garlic cloves that might still be.

Slowly stir in the Almond Milk (or milk) mixing thoroughly. Add the Dijon (Be super generous with the Dijon) Stir well.

Add  2 cups of the Gruyere (reserve the third cup for later) and 1 1/2 cups of the Cheddar slowly, melting the cheese into the sauce over medium-low heat. 

Add the Worcestershire, the Cayenne, the Paprika, the Pepper, and the Nutmeg. If the sauce is looking super thick, thin it a bit with the hot pasta water. 

Taste the sauce. add salt as needed. Try to just taste it once, but, you may keep going back in like I did (I HAD to be sure it was ok!) (Even more fun is using the sourdough crust scraps... you don't want that to go to waste!)

Melt 2 Tablespoons of butter

Toss the Sourdough Croutons in the butter

Drain the pasta really well. Shake off all the water and add it to the sauce and mix really well. Let it sit while you're making the croutons and let the sauce get right up in there!

Pour all the saucey pasta into a big shallow baking dish.

Spread out the buttery croutons all over the top of the mac

Sprinkle the last cup of Gruyere over the top

Broil it til it's bubbly and browned on top

Pull it out and let it sit for a couple minutes while you get the table ready. 

Serve with veggies or salad. I served mine with steamed broccoli. 

Should serve about 6-8 people 

Sinful. Dangerous. Delish.


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