Tradition and Heritage are something that sometimes take a backseat to modern urgency. For me there are family traditions that I hope will never lose their way. Growing up there are lots of memories that stick out in my mind. One is my grandfather having a cold beer with his dinner and the other is my mother making her Mac and Cheese for the holidays. For me the two definitely go hand in hand. People all over the world know that there are few things better than a cold beer and hot Mac and Cheese.
Stella Artois has teamed up with some amazing female foodies and taste makers for their series The Butcher, The Baker, The Belgian Beer Maker. As I was watching this beautiful series I could not help but to think of my mom and how she introduced me to so many wonderful and exotic foods as kid.
Check out one of my favorites:
Now I think of myself as a super foodie. I know what I like and I love to try new things. One thing I try every chance I get is Mac and Cheese. As yummy as so many recipes are I always seem to yearn for family tradition. Over the years I have taken my mothers Mac and Cheese recipe, added and tested out different ingredients. From select cheeses to adding meats or veggies to out of the way spices, but I always seem to come back to the simplicity of the original version.. 9 simple ingredients make for the best.
So when Stella Artois asked me to pair their beer with a recipe that I adore.. how could I say no? I've been wanting to share my Mac and Cheese recipe for a while now and this pairing made for the perfect opportunity. I mean deliciously crafted beer sitting along side deliciously crafted mac and cheese makes for a perfect afternoon.
Taye's Baked Mac and Cheese
1/2 pound Pepper Jack cheese
1/2 pound Extra Sharp Cheddar
1/2 pound a cheese of your choice (in this case I used Italian Truffle cheese)
2 cups of whole milk (give or take)
Salt (few dashes)
Black pepper (few dashes)
1/2 Stick of unsalted butter
1 pound Large Rigatoni Noodles
Pre heat oven to 375 degrees. In a large bowl grate all three cheeses and mix together. Boil Rigatoni noddles according to the directions on the box. Boil them just shy of the time on the box leaving them slightly under cooked. Drain. Add the 1/2 stick of butter to the hot noodles and melt until all noodles are coated. Set aside.
In a blender add milk, salt, pepper and eggs. Blend well. In either a 9 inch baking dish (or a dish of your choice..here I have used a backing pot) layer noodles and cheese. One layer of noodles one layer of cheese until pot or dish is full. Pour the mixture over the noodles and cheese until milk is 3/4 of the way filling the pot. Add another later of cheese to the very top of everything making sure to concentrate on the edges of the dish or pot. Loosely cover your dish with foil making sure that he foil is not touching the noodles. Bake for 35 mins. After 35 mins remove the foil and bake for another 10-25 mins. Once your Mac & Cheese is done turn on your broiler and broil til the top is brown. (this only takes a minute or so depending on your broiler). Serve Hot!
*This post was brought to you by Stella Artois