Mac and cheese is pure comfort food to me.

Mother Lovett made some delicious, creamy macaroni and cheese, and I was always trying to perfect it. She always told me my version was ’too dry.’ Of course it was, because Inever used 6lbs of velveeta.

 

One thing I have none of when it comes to mac and cheese? Self control.

So I made a lighter version of the heavy duty stuff.

And this time, I portioned it into tiny ramekins in hopes of stopping after eating one. It worked. Sorta.

 

I never liked pasta when I was younger, probably because it was usually served with tomato sauce and I do not like tomato sauce.

 

I think that using fun-shaped pasta makes every meal more enjoyable. Here I used whole wheat fusilli.

I still made a traditional cheese sauce, beginning with a roux. But most of the sauce was made with skim milk.

Oh, and cheese. Lots and lots of cheese.

Four different kinds went into this dish.

Gruyere. (Sigh.)

Smoked Cheddar. (Adore.)

Parmesan. (Swoon.)

Brie. (Drool.)

Could there possibly be a better combination?

I didn’t think so.

After baking, I set it under the broiler just so the cheese would brown. I love brown, bubbly cheese.

 

I love the crispy, crunchy texture that the cheese takes on. And I love the creamy, melty cheese in the bottom of the bowl.

I love a lot of things.

But do you know what I don’t love?

Moustaches.

Yeah. Mr. How Sweet is still rockin’ the moustache. Or as I like to call it, the crustache.

Last night he cooked his own dinner. Know what he made? Frozen fish filets. I am embarrassed to admit that we even had those in my house. But we did. And he made them.

 

And then he googled ‘how to cook stuff,’ in anticipation for making his own dinner tonight.

As much as I hate the crustache, watching him make dinner for himself is highly entertaining.

I’ll admit, I feel a tiny bit bad. But then he tries to kiss me and I feel those crusty whiskers on my face, and all my remorse goes right out the window.

 

Luckily for him, we had some of this mac and cheese leftover from dinner this past weekend, so he was able to gobble this up for his side.

 

Lightened-Up Four Cheese Mac and Cheese

4 cups whole wheat pasta, cooked

1 tablespoon butter

1 tablespoon flour

1 1/2 cups skim milk

1/4 cup heavy cream

1 teaspoon corn starch

1/2 cup grated gruyere cheese

1/2 cup grated smoked cheddar cheese

1/2 cup parmesan cheese

4 oz brie cheese

1/8 teaspoon nutmeg

salt & pepper to taste

Preheat oven to 400.

Separate cooked pasta into 4 ramekins.

In a medium saucepan, melt butter and whisk in flour to create a roux. Once smooth, add in skim milk and heavy cream, continuing to stir until warm. Add in gruyere and cheddar cheese, stirring until smooth. If sauce it not think enough, whisk in cornstarch until desired consistency is reached. Stir in 1/4 cup parmesan and 2 oz of brie. Add in nutmeg and salt and pepper, if needed.

Pour cheese sauce over pasta in each ramekin. Top with remaining parmesan and brie. Bake for 15-20 minutes. Broil for 2 minutes to brown cheese on top.

 

 

Mac and cheese with fish filets – sounds like a kiddo meal, eh? I have a feeling his meals over the next few days will give me many belly laughs.

That is, unless he shaves. . .

 

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72 Responses to “Lightened-Up Four Cheese Mac and Cheese.”

  1. #
    51
    kate — March 2, 2010 @ 9:12 pm

    omg that looks to die for! and actually more simple than i would imagine it would be- must try!

    Reply

  2. #
    52
    BakeMe — March 2, 2010 @ 9:12 pm

    You know, I really try to be a vegan as best I can but I found myself drooling at the pics. So much for being a loyal vegan!

    Reply

  3. #
    53
    Annie@stronghealthyfit — March 2, 2010 @ 9:55 pm

    That mac and cheese looks awesome! I love that you portioned it out into individual ramekins. Instant portion control! My husband makes a similar recipe, with a combo of really yummy cheeses.

    Reply

  4. #
    54
    Caitlin@TheTwentyFifthYear — March 2, 2010 @ 11:03 pm

    So when you decide to leave the man behind hair-growth catastrophe 2010, let’s move to some sweet little Southern town where we can open up a restaurant featuring this mac and cheese and drink before noon. Let it simmer – you’ve got 20 days after all.

    Reply

  5. #
    55
    The Candid RD — March 3, 2010 @ 5:18 am

    My mom used to make homemade mac and cheese when I was a kid, but I always got mad because I liked the processed kind better. Now I look back and think..what was I thinking?! Homemade is SO MUCH better! This recipe sounds divine. thanks for sharing it, I plan on making homemade mac and cheese for my cookbook soon!

    Reply

  6. #
    56
    Haleigh — March 3, 2010 @ 5:27 am

    Oh wow.. that mac and cheese looks absolutely fantastic! I haven’t had homemade mac and cheese since my grandma made it for me awhile back. Must change that soon! xoxo

    Reply

  7. #
    57
    Fit Chick in the City — March 3, 2010 @ 5:34 am

    That combo of cheeses is to die for! Also, why I won’t become vegan anytime soon.

    Reply

  8. #
    58
    shelly (cookies and cups) — March 3, 2010 @ 6:20 am

    I just came across your site and am so glad I did!
    Everything looks so great and I am making those peppermint patties as soon as I can get my butt off this chair :)

    Reply

  9. #
    59
    Jenny — March 3, 2010 @ 7:07 am

    Mmm that sounds fabulous! and I am not a big fan of pasta either, but when I do have some, I prefer the fun-shaped noodles also :)

    Reply

  10. #
    60
    Amanda — March 3, 2010 @ 7:18 am

    I just made mac n cheese two days ago. But really, it looks nothing like yours. VERY beautiful!

    Reply

  11. #
    61
    Melinda — March 3, 2010 @ 7:28 am

    YES! My fave food ever is mac and cheese. This looks awesome. I too love the fun pasta for this and yours are so cute. Love the curly-qs.

    Reply

  12. #
    62
    Jenn (www.j3nn.net) — March 3, 2010 @ 3:04 pm

    Oh my GAWDDDDDD! This looks mouthwatering. I LOVE mac ‘n cheese in any form and this looks perrrrrrrfect. YUM x 1000000000000000000000

    Jenn

    Reply

  13. #
    63
    Brenda — March 4, 2010 @ 8:48 am

    Yum! Love the cheese combinations… smokey cheddar and gruyere are two of my favs! Nice site…

    Reply

  14. #
    64
    Heather Lewis — March 4, 2010 @ 10:35 am

    A must-try at our house! I LOVE brie. If I wasn’t married, I’d marry it!

    http://www.adventuresinwomanland.com

    Reply

  15. #
    65
    Kelly — March 4, 2010 @ 3:27 pm

    UM… WOW! This looks so good!!

    Reply

  16. #
    66
    The Comfort of Cooking (Georgia) — March 4, 2010 @ 4:53 pm

    Wow, that looks wonderful! Definitely worth a try. Mac n’ cheese is my all time favorite, though I try not to eat it TOO often. This will give me an excuse to maybe sneak it in a little more! :)

    Reply

  17. #
    67
    Jen @ My Kitchen Addiction — March 5, 2010 @ 11:40 am

    I can’t get over how GOOD this looks… Yum! Love the little individual portions, too.

    Reply

  18. #
    68
    Miranda — March 16, 2010 @ 9:36 am

    mmmh. I am always a sucker for a good mac and cheese. This looks FANTASTIC.

    Reply

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