It’s macaroni cheese time! I haven’t posted a macaroni cheese recipe in forever, and since it’s my joint favourite food in the world (joint with pizza, obviously), I thought I should remedy that situation swiftish.
Before you start thinking that this is just any old macaroni cheese recipe, let me remind you of the title of this post (which you probably read all of seven seconds ago, keep up) – it’s got brown butter leeks. Butter, cooked until it goes all lovely and caramelised, with lovely soft and oniony sautéed leeks! Just this one simple addition takes the macaroni cheese from ‘yum’ to ‘hellooo there’.
Rather than making a roux-based macaroni cheese, this time I went for the super lazy method, and just stirred some grated cheese (and of course that gorgeous brown butter) through the hot pasta. When it all melts together, it makes a lovely cheesy sauce. It’s not quite as thick and creamy as a roux-based sauce is, but this method definitely gets my vote for being quicker, easier, and causing less washing up – the sauciness is all created in the same pan you cooked the pasta in (and, let’s face it, less washing up counts for about ten votes).
You probably know that I eat quite a lot of cheese, but do you know how much cheese the whole of the UK buys every second? Well, according to this infographic by Quandoo, nearly 20kg of cheese is bought in the UK every second! I’m glad I’m not the only one who’s cheese crazy…
Check out the infographic for information about all sorts of other food products, and see the totals stacking up in real-time – I can’t say I’m surprised by the number of tea bags that we buy! Do any of the totals surprise you?
Macaroni cheese with brown butter leeks
- 300 g pasta
- 2 tbsp + 1tbsp butter
- 1 large leek halved lengthwise then sliced
- 4 cloves garlic minced
- Black pepper
- 100 g cheddar cheese grated
- Boil the pasta until al dente.
- Meanwhile, add 2tbsp of the butter to a frying pan, and cook over a medium heat until the it has completely melted, and you begin to see specks of brown appearing. Add the leeks and garlic, and season well.
- Cook in the butter for around 5 minutes, stirring regularly, until the leeks are soft and just beginning to caramelise.
- When the pasta is ready, drain it and add the final tablespoon of butter, along with the cheese and leeks. Mix well and leave the pan over a very low heat for another minute or so until the cheese is fully melted.