Featured Wisconsin Cheeses: Provolone, Monterey Jack
Macaroni & cheese and spicy foods are two of my all-time favorite food loves. There is no better comfort food on the planet than mac & cheese, in my opinion. What makes it even better is that there are so many different ways to prepare it. It is versatile comfort food at its best! And spicy food, oh how I love my spicy food. It is one of the very first things that bonded my husband and I when we were dating. Together we would create a spicy dish in my kitchen and eat it, with a summertime margarita in hand, while sitting outside on my patio. Ahh, those were the days.
I knew I wanted to incorporate a bit of spice into this recipe, and I absolutely love how it turned out. It can be as spicy as you want to make it, and it is deliciously creamy.
Creamy Spiced Mac and Cheese
16 ounces large elbow macaroni
4 tablespoons butter
1/4 cup flour
1 cup whole milk
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
3 ounces cream cheese
1/3 cup sour cream
1 can (4-ounce) diced green chiles
1 jalapeño pepper, finely diced
2 1/2 cups (10 ounces) Wisconsin Provolone Cheese, shredded
1 1/2 cups (6 ounces) Wisconsin Monterey Jack Cheese, shredded
3 tablespoons olive oil
4 slices white bread, crusts removed and torn into small pieces
Cook macaroni 3 minutes short of package directions. Rinse and set aside.
Preheat oven to 350° F. Spray a 2-quart baking dish with cooking spray and set aside.
In a large skillet, melt butter over medium heat. Whisk in flour.
Add milk, salt, pepper, cayenne pepper, cream cheese, sour cream, green chiles, and jalapeno. Stir until thickened, 5-7 minutes.
Add Provolone. Stir until cheese is melted. Add the cooked macaroni to the skillet and stir until combined. Pour the mixture into the prepared baking dish. Top with Monterey Jack.
Bake in preheated oven for 25-30 minutes, or until cheese is lightly browned.
Heat olive oil in a medium skillet over medium heat. Add bread pieces and toss until lightly toasted. Sprinkle toasted bread pieces over the baked macaroni and cheese. Return to oven and bake for an additional 10 minutes, or until the bread crumbs are golden brown.
I hope you enjoy this as much as I did!
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Macaroni & Cheese, Monterey Jack, provolone, spicy, Wisconsin Cheese
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