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Monday, November 21, 2011

Meatless Monday: Spinach Mac and Cheese

As you may already know from my various Meatless Monday posts, mac and cheese is a staple around our house. Getting my three year old to eat vegetables is a challenge so there are times we need to be sneaky about it so when I stumbled upon this mac and cheese in Everyday Food, I cried with joy!

This mac and cheese is easy to make BUT it was definitely missing something -- maybe Dijon mustard?  When I make it again, I will add a teaspoon or two for sure.

Spinach Mac and Cheese
adapted from Everyday Food


3 tablespoons unsalted butter
1/2 cup minced yellow onion
1/3 cup all-purpose flour
4 cups whole milk, room temperature
Coarse salt and ground pepper
1-2 teaspoons of dijon mustard
2 bunches curly- or flat-leaf spinach (about 1 3/4 pounds total), trimmed, washed, and cut crosswise into 1/2-inch-thick strips
5 ounces Gruyere cheese, grated (2 cups)
3/4 pound elbow macaroni, cooked according to package instructions


In a large saucepan, melt butter over medium. Add onion and cook until translucent, 6 minutes. Whisk in flour and cook, stirring frequently, until mixture is pale golden and has a slightly nutty aroma, about 2 minutes. Whisking constantly, add 2 cups milk. Add remaining 2 cups milk, raise heat to medium-high, and whisk until smooth; season with salt, pepper and Dijon mustard. Cook, whisking constantly, until sauce comes to a boil, 8 to 10 minutes. Reduce heat to low and simmer gently, stirring occasionally, until sauce thickens, 13 to 15 minutes.

Add spinach and cook, stirring constantly, until wilted, about 3 minutes. Add cheese and stir until melted, about 2 minutes. Add cooked macaroni and stir to combine. Serve immediately.

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