Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Rachael's Pimiento Mac 'n' Cheese

When there's three kids in the house, guess what they want for their lunch! Mac 'n' Cheese of course! Two weeks of school holidays has started this week and my niece came over to stay for a couple of days. For their lunch today, I've given them a few choices to choose from. All three of them, my daughter, my son and my niece chose Mac 'n' Cheese. So Mac 'n' Cheese, it is!

This is from Rachael Ray's "Look + Cook". It is full of colourful photos  for every recipe (don't you love this?), and step-by step pictures that really calls out for "Look + Cook"! The meals pictured in this book are so gorgeously delicious! I read a lot of great reviews about this book, and when I saw Brenda from Brenda's Canadian Kitchen cooked up some delicious looking meals from this book, I knew that I really must take a peek into Look+Cook. One look into this book, I knew that it would follow me home! 

This is so yummy, the kids really enjoyed this. The addition of sweet paprika powder is really nice. Though the recipe calls for 2 teaspoons of hot sauce, I used maybe only 1/2 teaspoon as I was afraid that it might be too spicy for the kids. I cannot get any Pimiento, have not seen it before either, so I just substitute with one sweet red bell pepper.  It added a nice touch to this Mac 'n' Cheese.

Between the four of us, we finished everything! There was no leftovers! That good? How can it not be, look at that cheesy gooey cheese! 

This recipe is a keeper, and I know that it will be back in my kitchen again!

Pimiento Mac 'n' Cheese
(adapted from "Look+Cook" by Rachael Ray)
Serves 6
1 pound cavatappi pasta (hollow, fat corkscrew-shaped pasta) or pasta elbows
1 tablespoon EVOO (extra-virgin olive oil)
3 tablespoons butter
1 medium onion, finely chopped
3 garlic cloves, finely chopped
Black pepper
3 tablespoons all-purpose flour
2 tablespoons sweet paprika, plus additional for garnish
2 cups whole milk
2 teaspoons hot sauce
3 cups grated sharp yellow cheddar cheese
2 (4-ounce) jars pimiento, drained (I used 1 sweet red bell pepper, chopped)
1/4 cup finely chopped fresh flat-leaf or curly parsley

Bring a large pot of water to a boil for the pasta. Salt the water and cook the pasta to just shy of al dente.
Heat a large pot over medium heat with the EVOO and butter. When the butter melts, add the onions, garlic, and salt and pepper and cook until the onions are softened, about 5 minutes. Add the flour and cook for another minute. Stir in the paprika. Whisk in the milk and hot sauce and bring up to a bubble, then cook to thicken for a minute or two. Turn off the heat and stir in half of the cheese in a figure-eight motion until melted. Add the pimientos. 
Preheat the broiler.
When the pasta is nearly al dente, drain it well and add it to the pot with the cheese sauce. Toss to combine. Then pour the pasta into a baking dish, top with the remaining cheese, and brown it under the broiler, 2 to 3 minutes. Garnish with the chopped parsley and a generous sprinkle of sweet paprika.

(my notes : if you are using sweet red bell pepper, saute them together with the onions and garlic).


  1. wow..thats a perfect pot meal,looks yummy!!

  2. Perfect timing. I've been wondering what I could eat for lunch ~ nothing sounded good. Now, I'm going to make some mac n cheese! :) What a great recipe with really tempting pics!
    US Masala

  3. Mac n cheese is my kids favorite too.. thanks for sharing the recipe..

    Sunanda's Kitchen

  4. Im absolutely hungry looking this! look delicious! gloria

  5. Yummy! Never knew how to use pimiento in pasta! Great idea! Will try it out!

  6. My beloved friend
    All the kids love the pasta. And these are very delicious!
    Thanks for the nice recipe!
    Many greetings and kisses

  7. Joy, this is so funny. You're the 4th person that I know of who bought that cookbook based on my reviews of the recipes on the blog. This is one of the first dishes I made from it. We loved it too. Your pics are gorgeous, I especially like that last one with the dropping cheese. I wish I could reach through my computer and grab some. :o)

  8. Whoops! I meant "dripping" cheese, not dropping, lol!

  9. I don't know why, but I'm always hesitant when pimiento is involved. Your dish looks quite tasty though!

  10. Irresistible and my all time fav mac n cheese,drooling here..

  11. Mac n Cheese...Looks awesome! This is something which I simply can't resist ;)!

  12. Great idea adding pimiento to the mac and cheese, looks delicious and colorful. Have a great week :-)

  13. Great minds! Kids always have the best food ideas :) Lovely recipe, I love the additions of the spice. I like my mac n'cheese to have a bit of a kick

  14. Argghhh such a comfort food!!! I can have these anytime, not my kids. Haishhhh...

    So, what's your plan for the school holidays? I'm resting at home due to fever and flu. Almost a week now..:(

  15. Pasta and cheese combination can never go wrong isn't it? :-)
    Looks delicious

    Hamaree Rasoi

  16. What a coincidence! I cooked mac & cheese this past weekend - only my second time doing so. Although it is a favorite with the kids here, I never felt the urge to cook it as I never grew up with it. I finally made it for a church event and my youngest son enjoyed it very much and requested I make it again. I guess I have been depriving him all these years. Will share the recipe soon. Your spicy versions sounds really good!

  17. Mac and cheese, hmm...I love it too!

  18. My son's favorite .. he can eat it all day long.

    Event: Dish it Out - Spinach and Garlic

  19. Muy buena tu pasta.
    Un saludito

  20. This looks so tasty! Thanks for sharing :)

  21. Mmmm! That sounds so yummy!

  22. Se ve muy delicioso se me hace agua la boca ,se ve estupendo,una receta realmente tentadora,cariños y abrazos.

  23. I'm just catching up on your blog, so many delicious recipes! This mac n cheese looks yummy. Now that it's the school holidays I'm sure we'll see more great children-friendly food from you! :)

  24. Looks sinfully delicious and I love the spices and the addition of the red bell pepper too! Thanks for sharing!

  25. It was beatiful and delicious. Have a nice day. kisses, Marta.

  26. Mac and cheese is always very popular with kids. I'm with them too when come to this dish. I like this Rachael Ray's version with the addition of paprika. I'm keen to try the Nigella's version for the way she wrote about food and kids in her book.

  27. Yummmmm! So cheesy and super delicious!

  28. Hi everyone,
    Thank you for stopping over and for all your lovely comments! Have a nice day!

  29. the picture looks really tempting!! never tried anything like these before.