Saturday, April 3, 2010

Skillet macaroni and cheese or, how to make a cheese sauce

This Weight Watchers recipe is a favorite for me. I don't love food that is overly spicy or has a lot of spices in it, often for me, bland is best. This isn't exciting, of course, but there's something comforting about a nice macaroni and cheese dinner, whether you are a kid or not! This one is from the Weight Watchers Comfort Classics cookbook, which I LOVE, by the way. Totally recommend it. (Note, I looked for this cookbook on and amazon to link it to you, but it's not on and someone on amazon wants $38 for it!! I got mine at Weight Watchers for $10!)

Anyway. The first time Geoff saw me making this recipe, he was impressed that I could make my own cheese sauce! I didn't think much of it, I was only following the recipe! I think this meal tastes so much better than a box of macaroni and cheese (even though that's really cheap!) and it's only 6 points for a cup!

First, cook the macaroni, any type, drain, and set aside. I typically do this while I'm getting everything else ready, to save some time.
To make the cheese sauce, melt the butter in an ovenproof skillet, add flour and cook, whisking constantly for one minute. Gradually whisk in the milk. Increase the heat, whisking constantly, until the mixture comes to a boil and thickens slightly, about 5 minutes.
Remove from heat, add the cheddar cheese, salt and pepper, whisking until cheese is melted.
Add the pasta, stirring to coat.

Preheat the boiler. Mix breadcrumbs and parmesan cheese, sprinkle over the macaroni and cheese in the skillet. Broil 5 inches from the heat source, until the crumbs are browned, about 1 minute.
I didn't take a before baking picture, but here is the delicious after!

Here are the ingredients and their amounts:
8 ounces whole-wheat macaroni
1 tablespoon butter
1 tablespoon + 2 teaspoons flour
1 1/2 cups fat free milk
1 cup shredded reduced-fat sharp cheddar cheese
1/2 teaspoon of salt
1/8 teaspoon pepper
1 tablespoon plain dried bread crumbs
1 tablespoon grated parmesan cheese
Serves 4!

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