(Not-Your-Average) Shells ‘n’ Cheese

A couple of days ago, my parents went out for their anniversary. This left me and my two younger brothers at home… So, what did I do for supper? I did what any girl might do when her low-carbing parents are gone. I seized the moment, and made macaroni and cheese! Well… Shells and cheese, I guess.

Here’s roughly how I did it. I didn’t use a recipe, so I really don’t know amounts. But, it was delicious!

I found this image on Pinterest. I think gruyere can safely go on my list of favorite cheeses…

(Not-Your-Average) Shells ‘n’ Cheese

Preheat broiler (generally 500F).

Butter several ramekins, or other oven-safe bowls.

  • Butter (may be 1/4 cup?)
  • Minced Onion (probably about 2-3 tablespoons)

In a medium saucepan, melt butter, and add onion. Over medium heat, sauté onions… simultaneously browning the butter. 

  • Flour (not sure… probably between 1/4 and 1/2 cup)
  • Milk (2-4 cups, or so, until a nice consistency is reached)

Whisk in flour to butter mixture until smooth (it won’t look completely smooth, since the minced onion is in this as well). Add milk, a little at a time, whisking thoroughly to incorporate flour mixture. This should thicken pretty quickly, so simply add enough milk to reach the consistency you desire. I went for a fairly thick, creamy sauce so that it would hopefully stick better to the pasta.

  • Salt, to taste
  • Pepper, to taste
  • Sherry, to taste

Remove the sauce from the heat, and turn off the stove. Stir in salt and pepper to taste (I like to use kosher salt and fresh-ground black pepper). Stir in a little sherry. I probably just added about a teaspoon. You could probably add more than that, but I wanted to be sure not to end up with a sherry casserole. 🙂

  • Pasta (I used shells, and really enjoyed it)
  • Gruyere, shredded (we had smoked gruyere in the fridge, so that’s what I used. I think it would have been even better with standard)

Stir together pasta, gruyere (to taste… I wouldn’t go overboard, though. I like the simplicity of the dish with less cheese. You can satisfy your cheese craving on the top of the dish…), and enough sauce to make it come together nicely. Just get it to the consistency you think best.

Fill buttered baking dishes with the mixture, and top with shredded gruyere. Place in broiler until browned and bubbly.

Enjoy!

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