Saturday, September 10, 2011

Creamy Spicy Macaroni


This pasta dish was created on a whim and in a flurry before my husband arrived home. I was inspired by the abundance of peppers in my fridge, and, knowing my husband's love of pasta, I set to work. This dish takes a few more pots and pans than I normally like to work with, but it's totally worth it! Even as cold leftovers, this creamy macaroni dish was delicious. If you like spice, you'll love Creamy Spicy Macaroni! 


Creamy Spicy Macaroni 
Serves 4

2 cups short cut pasta (i.e shells, cavatappi, etc)
1 Tbsp butter
1 Tbsp flour
1 cup 2% milk
1/4 to 1/2 cup water, optional
1/4 tsp cumin
1/2 cup shredded Muenster cheese
1 large clove garlic, minced
1/2 jalapeno, diced (seeded if you wish to lower the spice)
1/2 banana pepper, sliced
1 Roma tomato, diced
 Canola oil

In a 2 quart sauce pan, boil water and cook pasta to al dente. 

Heat a second sauce pan to medium heat and add butter. When butter is melted, sprinkle in flour. Whisk together and allow the flour flavor to cook out for a moment. This mixture will be very clumpy. If it isn't, sprinkle in additional flour. Slowly add in milk, whisking as you pour. Stir together until lumps are gone. Cook 5 minutes or until the mixture thickens, stirring occasionally. As sauce continues to simmer and thicken, add in 1/4-1/2 cup water to achieve desired consistency. Stir in cumin, salt and pepper. Stir in cheese until melted and evenly combined. Continue to stir occasionally while simmering sauce. 

Meanwhile, bring a medium skillet to medium high heat. Drizzle with canola oil. Saute garlic and peppers for 5 minutes, until softened according to your taste. Add in tomato. Cook an additional 2 minutes. 

Drain pasta. Add the pepper and tomato mixture to the cream sauce. Stir in pasta. Serve. 

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