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Mexican Mac and Cheese

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Mexican Mac and Cheese is creamy and full of Mexican spices and green chiles! This southwest mac and cheese twist is the perfect side dish for barbecues, and is delicious when topped with any protein! 

My first job out of college was for a large IT company that primarily serviced hospitals. I traveled for them often. Sometimes my trips were to exciting locales, and sometimes they weren't. I generally judged a trip based on the local food. After 12 hours on my feet in a hospital, all I wanted to do was scarf down some delicious food, eat some comfort food like this Mexican Mac and Cheese, drink  a beer or two, and then hit the sack!

Mexican mac and CheeseMy first job out of college was for a large IT company that primarily serviced hospitals. I traveled for them often. Sometimes my trips were to exciting locales, and sometimes they weren't. I generally judged a trip based on the local food. After 12 hours on my feet in a hospital, all I wanted to do was scarf down some delicious food, maybe a beer or two, and then hit the sack! 

Mexican Mac and Cheese

I didn't expect to love Santa Fe, New Mexico. But I really did. I spent about three weeks there working on a project and feel for the city. The people there were warm and welcoming, and the landscape and architecture was stunning. So unlike anything this Midwestern girl had ever witnessed! 

Southwestern Macaroni and Cheese

I was so surprised by the food. It was delicious, but unlike anything I had tried before. The people of New Mexico find ways to add their green chiles into pretty much everything, and they are well justified because it is damn delicious. In my three weeks there, I ate green chile on burgers, in soup, on enchiladas, chile rellenos, burritos, and even on a pizza (wouldn't recommend). And, thought about what recipes I could incorporate them into back home, like this Mexican Mac and Cheese!

Southwestern Macaroni and Cheese

By the time I left, I swore "I'm never eating green chiles again." That didn't hold up. I'm so grateful for my time in New Mexico and I love incorporating green chiles into dishes. They are just one of those rare ingredients (like butter or garlic) that makes almost anything taste better. 

Southwest Macaroni and Cheese

This Mexican mac and cheese is a family recipe, from my husband's maternal grandmother. She makes killer mac and cheese. The sauce is simple and decadent. It's always perfect.

Southwest Macaroni and Cheese

I add a little southwestern flavor to the traditional recipe. We love to eat this Mexican Mac and Cheese as a side for barbecue or any Mexican dishes. Mexican Mac and Cheese

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Mexican Mac and Cheese

Mexican Mac and Cheese

Yield: 5

Baked macaroni with a luscious, creamy southwestern cheese sauce.

Ingredients

  • 2 cups uncooked elbow macaroni
  • 2 tablespoon margarine
  • 2 tablespoon flour
  • 1 teaspoon dry mustard
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ½ teaspoon black pepper
  • dash of cayenne pepper
  • 1 ¼ cups milk
  • 1 cup shredded mexican blend cheese
  • 2 tablespoon diced green chiles (from can)
  • 1 cup panko bread crumbs
  • 8x8 casserole dish

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Cook pasta as instructed on package.
  3. For cheese sauce, melt margarine in medium saucepan over medium low heat. Stir in flour, dry mustard, cayenne and black pepper,and salt.
  4. Gradually stir in milk, whisking constantly to avoid lumps. Cook until slightly thickened.
  5. Remove from heat, add cheese and green chiles.
  6. Combine drained cooked pasta and cheese sauce in greased 8x8 pan. Cover with bread crumbs.
  7. Bake at 350 for 4 minutes. Then, turn oven to low broil. Broil for one minute, until bread crumbs are browned.

Notes

  • You can serve this mac and cheese directly from the stove if you prefer.

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