The first thing people learn upon meeting me is that I LOVE LOVE LOVE chocolate. Should I say it again? LOVE!!! Something that people who stick around learn is that I also LOVE LOVE LOVE cheese. I have an unhealthy obsession with these two things that I’m working on. Hey, we all have our vices, right!?
I got home from work today and stared at the contents of my pantry and refrigerator hoping for a brilliant idea to hit me upside the head. And today it did! As soon as I saw the cheese and red curry paste in my fridge and the pasta in my pantry, I knew exactly what I wanted to make for dinner – Red Curry Mac n’ Cheese!
In college, I used to make a very unhealthy mac n’ cheese filled with cream cheese and full fat cheddar cheese. So bad but so good! After making it a couple of times, I got the hang of the basics…rue –> cheese sauce. The first time I tried healthifying the full fat version it turned out to be a fail. But I think I have it down pat now. This version is healthier but it still contains cheese, people! I guess I’d call it semi-healthy!
The red curry adds a very unique flavor and contrast to the sharp cheddar. This dish is rich and creamy…everything I look for in my mac n’ cheese! And honestly, I was a bit surprised at how good this came out! Don’t you love it when that happens?!
Let’s get to it…
Red Curry Mac n’ Cheese
Yields 3-4 servings
1 1/2 cups cooked whole wheat elbow pasta
1 tablespoon olive oil
2 tablespoon Earth Balance, divided
2 tablespoons all purpose flour
2 teaspoons red curry paste
1 cup milk (I used skim)
1 (overflowing) cup 2% sharp cheddar cheese
salt to taste
a few dashes of paprika and garlic powder
small handful of breadcrumbs
Melt olive oil and 1 tablespoon Earth Balance in a medium pot. Add in flour and whisk until combined into a thick paste. Allow the flour paste to cook until it starts to turn brown (be careful to see that it doesn’t burn). Add red curry paste and mix until combined. Add milk and whisk until the flour paste melts into the milk (may take a few minutes). When the milk starts to bubble, add cheese and whisk until combined. Add salt, paprika, and garlic powder and stir until combined. Add cooked pasta to sauce and mix well. Pour pasta into a small glass dish. Melt remaining 1 tablespoon Earth Balance in the microwave for 10 seconds. Toss breadcrumbs in melted EB and sprinkle over mac n’ cheese. Place the pan under the broiler for a few minutes until the top starts to turn brown. Remove from broiler and devour!!!
I can’t say it enough…this was SOOO good (and SO easy)! I have enough leftovers to last me three more meals…YIPPEE!!!!
This may look like butternut squash soup, but I assure you it’s a yummy red curry cheese sauce simmering away.
Well, I’m off to do the dishes (ugh). Hope you have a great night!
Do you make mac n’ cheese from scratch? What’s your favorite flavor combo? Any special add ins?