If you are planning a holiday menu this season, try this update to the classic mac and cheese. This recipe is inspired by the famous pimento cheese served in the South. In fact , some say pimento cheese is the caviar of the South. The key ingredients include cheddar cheese, pimento, cream cheese and hot sauce. Well that’s just a step away from making a delicious mac and cheese! It’s an easy and delicious side to any holiday meal, but especially thinking about that holiday ham !
From by the bay, wishing you some cheesy holiday memories!
Pimento Mac and Cheese
Serves 4 to 6
- 8 ounces medium shells
- 4 tablespoons unsalted butter
- 1/4 cup all purpose flour
- 2 cups whole milk
- 4 ounces cream cheese
- 1 1/2 cup shredded cheddar cheese
- 1 1/4 cup grated or shredded parmesan cheese
- 1/4 teaspoon hot sauce
- 2 tablespoons scallions, chopped
- 2 tablespoons pepperdew, chopped
In a large pot of salted boiling water cook medium shells according to directions until al dente. Strain and keep aside. In a medium sauce pan warm the milk. In a large pot ( I use the same pot as I did for the pasta) melt butter . Whisk in flour mixing into a paste, keep moving for about 5 minutes. Slowly whisk in the warm milk stirring to make sure there are no lumps. Whisk until the sauce starts to thicken. Remove from heat and add the cream cheese and whisk until melted, then add 1 cup cheddar and 1 cup parmesan cheese. Stir until melted than add the hot sauce, scallions, pepperdew and cooked shells. Mix well and pour into a buttered 2 quart baking dish. Top with remaining cheese and bake in a 350 degree F oven for 20 minutes, until the cheese is melted . Remove from oven and let rest for 5 minutes before serving.