When I woke up this morning it was +8°C! I could not believe how cool it was out. I hate to be the bearer of bad news, but cool mornings (and macaroni and cheese cravings) are a sure sign that fall is just around the corner.
I should have called it Chipotle Cavatappi and Cheese, but macaroni noodles will work just as well. I got the idea to include chipotle chilis in this familiar dish from my last visit to The Keg. We took EPC’s father there for Father’s Day and ordered their Chipotle Macaroni and Cheese as an appetizer. We were all blown away. The smoky chipotle taste and spice added a delicious layer to this familiar comfort food.
This dish is really easy. No need to bother with a white sauce. You just layer the sauce coated pasta with cheese, top with bread crumbs and bake. If you prefer a gluten-free version omit the bread crumbs and try substituting corn macaroni for the wheat. I think corn pasta would go extremely well with the smoky flavour of this dish. Just be sure not to over cook it (corn pasta can get mushy).
If the end of summer is getting you down, just remember that Easy Chipotle Macaroni and Cheese is sure to make the approaching cool weather a bit easier to bear.
Easy Chipotle Macaroni and Cheese
1 375 g package of vegetable cavatappi, cooked for the minimum cooking time indicated on the package
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 medium onion, diced
3 garlic cloves, minced
1 28 ounce can of diced tomatoes
1 1/2 teaspoons chipotle chili powder
2 cups of grated old cheddar cheese
1 cup of grated parmesan
1/4 cup of bread crumbs
- Preheat oven to 375°C
- Bring water to boil in large pot, add pasta, return to boil and cook for the minimum time indicated on the package
- Meanwhile, heat oil in a medium saucepan and saute onions and garlic until translucent
- Add canned diced tomatoes and simmer for about 10 minutes.
- Stir in chipotle chili powder and simmer 5 minutes more.
- When pasta finishes cooking, drain and mix with tomato sauce.
- Add 1/3 of the pasta sauce mix to the bottom of a prepared 2 quart casserole dish. Top with a third of the cheddar and a third of the parmesan.
- Add another layer of pasta and cheese and repeat topping the final layer of cheese with the bread crumbs and few spritzes of olive oil.
- Cook at 375°C for 20-25 minutes until the bread crumbs are brown and the pasta is bubbling.