- 1 lb pasta, such as elbow macaroni
- 6 tbsp butter
- 8 tbsp flour
- 6 cups milk
- 2 tsp salt
- 8 oz jack cheese, shredded
- 8 oz chevre (goat cheese)
- 1/2 cup chopped scallions
- 1 cup panko bread crumbs
- California Olive Ranch extra-virgin olive oil, for drizzling
Cook pasta and drain. Preheat oven to 450 degrees F.
Heat milk in a thick-walled pot over medium heat (the thicker the pot, the less likely the milk is to burn). Heat the milk until it is warm, but not boiling.
Heat the butter over medium heat in a thick-walled pot (again, the thicker the pot, the less likely the butter is to burn). When the butter has melted, add the flour and whisk constantly for about 3 minutes.
Turn the heat off on the butter/flour mixture. Slowly add the warm milk, about a half cup at a time to the butter/flour mixture—whisking constantly. (Note: If you add the milk too quickly, the sauce will not thicken, too slowly, and it will thicken too quickly. Don’t worry—you’ll get the hang of it. The sauce will thicken rapidly—just keep whisking)
When the sauce is no longer thickening (probably about 3-4 cups of milk in), turn the heat back on to medium, and continue to whisk. The sauce will continue to thicken, and you can continue to add warm milk a half cup at a time. If you want a thicker sauce, you can stop short of the 6 cups total. If you want a thinner sauce, add all 6 cups of milk total. Continue to heat and whisk until the sauce is the desired thickness (and remember, it will get even thicker when you add the cheese)—about 5-10 minutes.
Add salt and cheese to the warm milk/flour mixture, and heat gently over low heat (low heat is key so that the cheese does not become grainy). Add the pasta and the scallions when the cheese is mostly melted.
Pour into a baking dish, and top with panko breadcrumbs. Bake for about five to ten minutes, or until bubbly.
Drizzle with California Olive Ranch extra-virgin olive oil, and enjoy!
Recipe courtesy of Homeroom, Oakland CA.