Having friends over this weekend or trying to impress your in-laws? Well, we've got you covered!
“For me, the fun in this dish is in the cheese pull! I love creamy, cheesy Mac ‘n’ Cheese topped with a crispy, toasted breadcrumb but when I dig my fork in and the cheese starts stretching, that’s when my boys (and me!) want to see how far we can go before it breaks off!" Chef Brandon Cook, the Executive Chef Culinary R&D, The Cheesecake Factory Incorporated, exclusively tells Morning Honey of the creation. “'Go, Go, GO!!!!' the chanting ensues when the Mac is being stretched to its limit! Comfort food is also great family time when those lifetime snap shots are imprinted into our lifelong memories. Seems 'cheesy,' but it works for me!"
Scroll through below to get your hands on the recipe!
Grand Lux Cafe Macaroni & Cheese Skillet
*Serves about 2 people
For the Cheddar Cheese Sauce: 2 Tbls. Butter, 2 Tbls. All-Purpose Flour, 1 cup Whole Milk, ¼ cup Heavy Cream, 2 cups Medium Sharp Cheddar Cheese, grated¼ tsp. Kosher Salt
For the Butter-Breadcrumb Mix: 2 Tbl. Panko Breadcrumbs, 2 Tbl. Butter, melted
For the Macaroni and Cheese: 8 oz. Macaroni Pasta, Dry/Uncooked (Or try Gemelli Pasta, which is what we use in our restaurants!)1/2 cup Medium Sharp Cheddar Cheese, grated 1/2 cup Monterey Jack Cheese, grated
For the Cheddar Cheese Sauce:
- Heat the butter in a small saucepot set over medium-high heat until the butter is completely melted.
- Add the flour and whisk to incorporate. Cook until the raw flour taste has been cooked away (about 1-1/2 minutes). Do not allow to turn brown. It should remain very light blond in color.
- Slowly add the whole milk a ¼ cup at a time, whisking to prevent lumps. Then, add the heavy cream while continuing to whisk. Allow the sauce to come to a gentle boil.
- Lower the heat. Simmer and stir occasionally to avoid burning (about 1 to 2 minutes).
- Add the grated cheddar cheese and stir to incorporate with a wire whisk until completely melted.
- Season with salt. Remove from the heat.*
For the Butter-Breadcrumb Mix:
1. In a small mixing bowl, combine the panko breadcrumbs and melted butter. Set Aside.
For the Macaroni and Cheese:
- Preheat the oven to the “broil” setting (if you do not have a broiler, set your oven to 500°F and leave your oven door slightly cracked open).
- Cook the macaroni pasta according to the package directions. Drain and set aside.
- Place the cooked and drained pasta into the saucepot with the cheddar cheese sauce. Using a rubber spatula, fold to incorporate.
- Place the macaroni and cheese into a small cast iron skillet or other oven-safe ramekin or small casserole dish. Then, sprinkle the butter-breadcrumb mixture evenly over the macaroni and cheese.
- Place your macaroni and cheese skillet into the oven until the cheese is melted and the breadcrumbs turn golden brown. Be careful not to burn the breadcrumbs.
- Remove the macaroni and cheese from the oven. Serve and enjoy!
*Notes: Cheddar cheese sauce can be made ahead of time and reheated.