Meat on a stick. That was our first thought.
What else do dads want to eat on Father’s Day? We pondered. What evokes the “oh, man… that is SO delicious!” comments when they come to dinner at our place? Sure they like the “adult” dishes I prepare… gobble them up even. But time and time again, the dudes can be found huddled over the kids’ mac n’ cheese, eating it with their bare hands while waiting for the proper meal to begin. And since the kids are always too full from snacks to make much of a dent in the thing, fortunately there’s plenty for the guys to load up on their plates alongside the “real meal”.
So this year, on Father’s Day, we’re giving the dad’s exactly what they want. Kids’ mac n’ cheese. And while this is a FAR cry from the boxed stuff, it’s NOT some fancy “adult” version with lobster or truffles.
The best part, there’s no time-consuming béchamel sauce to make. It’s simple carbs and cheese – and it’s straight up good. So let’s just all stop pretending this isn’t exactly what everyone wants on Sunday, and dig in.
- 1 pound pasta such as cavatappi
- 8 ounces mild white cheddar grated
- 8 ounces young Manchego cheese grated
- 2/3 cup milk
- Kosher salt
- 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
Preheat oven to 375. Butter a large baking dish, around 9x13” and set aside. You will use the remaining butter on top of the pasta.
Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Heavily salt the water (it should taste salty if you dip a finger in it). Boil the pasta until just al dente, which will be a few minutes shy of the recommended cooking time. Drain and place in a large bowl.
Toss the pasta with the grated cheeses and a little bit of salt. This is a good time to taste your pasta – the amount of salt you need will depend on how salty your pasta cooking water was. It will probably need between ½ - 1 teaspoon extra salt.
Place in the prepared pan and pour the milk over top. Dot with the remaining butter. Bake for 45 minutes until bubbly and browned slightly on top. Serve immediately.
*You can prepare everything ahead of time, up until the pasta goes into the oven to bake.
Try with Fraga do Corvo ’16.