There is always a reason to make macaroni & cheese. This American pasta favorite has always been among my favorite dishes. What better way to celebrate St. Patrick's Day then with an Irish take on this American classic.
Around every March 17th, I set out to find new Irish cheeses that have yet to cross my taste buds. There are lot of good options out there, some of which I got back to each year (i.e. Kerrygold Blarney Castle, yum!). This year I found a couple of mature cheddars that I hadn't tried yet - Wexford Mature Irish Cheddar and Kerrygold Reserve Cheddar. And what is a mature cheddar great for - why mac & cheese of course. Kerrygold Reserve is a two year aged cheddar with a strong, but not obnoxious bite. The Wexford Mature Irish cheddar is strong as well but with a bit of sweetness to it. Add to that the creaminess of the Gouda style Blarney Castle cheese and you have a recipe for a 3-cheese Irish mac & cheese that will deliver the goods. To add even more of the Emerald Isle to this dish - Kerrygold Irish Butter is a rich butter that ups the flavor ante.
To make my Irish mac & cheese, I choose to use 3 different cheeses, 2 cheddar and a Gouda-style cheese. For the butter I used Kerrygold Irish Butter.
- 10 oz elbow pasta
- 6 oz Mature Irish cheddar cheese I used 3 oz of Wexford Mature and 3 oz of Kerrygold Reserve
- 3 oz Kerrygold Blarney castle cheese shredded
- 2 oz Kerrygold Irish butter shredded
- 1 teaspoon kosher salt
- ¼ teaspoon white pepper
- ¼ teaspoon dry mustard
- 3 tablespoons flour
- 2 cups whole milk
- Preheat your oven to 350 degrees
- Bring about 1 gallon of salted water to boil in a large pot.
- Add the pasta. Cook until al dente. You want the pasta to have some give to it.
- Drain and place into a baking dish.
- Melt the butter over medium heat in a medium sauce pan.
- Add the flour, dry mustard, white pepper, and salt. Stir until the flour is mixed in and cooked.
- Add the milk. Bring to a simmer. Stir for 1 minute. Stir in the cheese in 3 batches.
- Pour the cheese over top the pasta. Place into the oven for 20-25 mintues until the cheese has browned on top.