We all have old favorites from our childhood and new favorites in our adulthood. This is one of mine .... a lovely, oven baked pasta casserole with just a few simple ingredients. The kind of comfort food that makes me keep on eating just for the delicious taste and texture long after I am full. A simple pasta casserole cooked just right - a little 'al dente' with some sweet tomatoes and bathed in a lovely light creamy bechamel like sauce - but far easier to make.
The crowning glory - well what else - a lovely blend of your favorite melty salty cheeses, cooked until the cheese is gently caramelized and sweet and gooey and crispy around the edges.
Comfort food at it's simplest but you don't have to be a god to enjoy it ...
This is a finely tuned recipe and if you add more pasta you will wreck it. So don't.
6 oz. macaroni (measure 3 1/2 c. when cooked)
1 1/2 - 2 c. grated cheese, half old cheddar & half mozzarella
1 - 14 oz. can diced tomatoes
3/4 tsp. sugar
3/4 tsp. yellow mustard
3/4 tsp. Worcestershire sauce
1/2 tsp. thyme
1/2 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. Tabasco sauce
1 small egg
1/4 c. + 2 Tbsp milk
Cook macaroni until al dente. Drain & pour into greased 8 c. casserole.
In small bowl shred cheeses & mix together. In another bowl stir together undrained tomatoes, sugar, mustard, Worcestershire, thyme, salt & 1/4 of the shredded cheeses. Pour over the pasta in the casserole dish & mix. Sprinkle cheeses on top. In small bowl stir egg w/ milk. Pour egg & milk mixture over top of cheese. Do not stir. Step away from the casserole. Tut! Tut! I see you - put that fork down & step away .... farther ... a little farther. ( far·ther –adverb 1. at or to a greater distance). Okay.
Now slip it into the oven & bake it at 350 Fahrenheit for 30 - 40 mins until caramelized & delicious looking. Let rest 5 mins. out of oven & enjoy with a lovely green salad.