Hye Thyme Cafe: Muffuletta Baked Macaroni and Cheese (Recycled Mac n Cheese??)

Welcome to the Hy
e Thyme Cafe. Although not all of my recipes are Armenian, the name is a little nod to my Armenian grandmother who is no longer with us. The Hye refers to all things related to her homeland, and she represents all things food-related to me, so the two just seemed to go together. I can't even claim that my Armenian recipes are truly Armenian, since Greece, Turkey, Armenia, Lebanon, Syria, and even Egypt share so many foods that they've all sort of morphed into one over thousands of years.

Whether you like to cook, bake, have never done either, or just like to play with your food...come on in and join me! :)

Thursday, July 28, 2011

Muffuletta Baked Macaroni and Cheese (Recycled Mac n Cheese??)

Muffuletta Baked Macaroni and Cheese : Hye Thyme Cafe

I started off with the idea to polish off the Muffaletta Pasta Salad I made the other day by re-purposing it into a Baked Macaroni and Cheese. Then it occurred to me that I had recently made a batch of Baked Tomatoes with Cornbread and Basil and had frozen the extra topping thinking I might try it on a ... yup, Baked Macaroni and Cheese (albeit not one with olives, ham, and salami). Then when I pulled everything out to start putting it together, I remembered I had some clarified butter left in the fridge from having made Cheese Bouregs recently, so this turned out to be recycling day in my kitchen.

When anyone in my family makes Baked Macaroni and Cheese, the base cheeses are always Muenster and American, then it's a free-for-all after that. Sometimes I'll add cheddar, sometimes a pepperjack or smoked mozzarella. Then there's the topping - sometimes a crumb topping with parm and/or romano, sometimes crushed cheese crackers, etc. So that's where I started - with Muenster and American. I forgot until I started stirring the sauce into the pasta that there was already Provolone in the pasta salad. Might actually be really good with a smokey provolone (any mac and cheese that is, not just this one).

I melted a couple of tablespoons of the clarified butter and stirred in a little flour to make a roux. Then I stirred in about a cup and a half of milk and let it just start to bubble before  whisking in the (shredded) cheese.

I sprayed a casserole dish with PAM and filled it with the pasta salad. When the cheese sauce was all nice and creamy, I poured it over the pasta and stirred it well to distribute the sauce into all the little pasta tubes. I actually had a little more than I needed and probably should have tossed the excess, but what can I say. I kept pouring.

Then I topped the whole thing with the cornbread mix I had in the freezer and little dots of butter I shaved off the clarified butter and baked it for about 30" at 325 until nice and bubbly. I think I actually like the Macaroni and Cheese more than I liked it as a Pasta Salad.

Muffuletta Baked Macaroni and Cheese : Hye Thyme CafeMuffuletta Baked Macaroni and Cheese : Hye Thyme Cafe

Muffuletta Baked Macaroni and Cheese : Hye Thyme Cafe


  1. You are on the Muffuletta train! I am loving this.

  2. If so, that was the last car in the train. LOL We all ate a few servings of the pasta salad and didn't want the rest to go to waste. :)


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