26 February 2010

Spicy Mac and Cheese with Broccoli and Chicken

Spicy Mac and Cheese with Broccoli and Chicken

I have a difficult time finding recipes that all my family likes. Three of my four kids like this one which is a big deal. I sometimes omit the chicken if I'm in a hurry and that works too for a meatless dinner.

2 T. olive oil
salt and pepper to taste
1 small onion-chopped
1 lb macaroni--I usually use corkscrew brown rice pasta
2 1/2 c. raw broccoli florets
3 T. butter
3 T. flour
1/2 cayenne pepper (I usually use 1/4 t. so it's not quite so spicy for my kids although it still gives it quite a "kick")
1 t. paprika
2 c. milk
1 c. chicken stock
2 c. sharp cheddar cheese
1 t. dijon mustard (opt.)

Cook pasta 5 minutes, then add broccoli and cook 3 more minutes or until al dente and the broccoli is tender.

While pasta cooks, heat medium sauce pot over medium heat. Add butter and melt, then add flour, cayenne pepper and paprika. Whisk until bubbly and then 1 more minute being careful not to burn. Whisk in milk and stock and raise heat to bring sauce to a quick boil. Simmer until thick about 5 minutes. (If it doesn't get really thick, it's fine.)

Drain pasta and add to pot with chicken.

Add cheese to milk sauce and melt. Stir in mustard if desired and season with salt and pepper.

I made this last night and meant to take pictures but it was all gobbled up before I had a chance to. I was tempted to take a picture of the little baby after eating it! He even loved it.

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