Forget about the boxed kind — the homestyle version is vastly superior, taking top prize as one of the ultimate comfort foods.
Baked Macaroni and Cheese
8 ouncesdry macaroni elbow pasta
2 tablespoonsall-purpose flour
2 ouncesDijon mustard
Dashground black pepper
8 ouncessharp cheddar cheese, shredded
2 tablespoonsbread crumbs
2 tablespoons Parmesan cheese, grated (optional)
Prep time: 20 minutes
Total time: 45 minutes
Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.
Bring large cooking pot to boil. Cook pasta to al dente, 6 to 8 minutes. Drain pasta and return to pot.
Combine flour and milk in saucepan over medium-high heat. Stir until lumps are gone. Crack egg over pan. Stir constantly, until mix begins to set and turn custardy. Add mustard and seasoning. Stir and simmer over reduced heat.
Stir sauce into pasta. Add sharp cheddar and butter. Stir until all ingredients are well blended, 1 or 2 minutes.
Pour combined ingredients into large baking dish. Top with bread crumbs and Parmesan cheese. Bake 20 to 25 minutes, or until golden brown. For extra crispiness set oven to broil and watch closely for several minutes. Let stand before serving.