Sunday, August 16, 2009

Barbecue Mac and Cheese

I cannot believe there is no recipe out there for this. A few weeks ago, I first started adding barbecue sauce to mac and cheese. Now, I'm not sure I can live without it. So I thought, "why don't they just cook the barbecue sauce into the mac and cheese?" I don't know. So here, my friends, is the best vegetarian dish for a barbecue you've seen yet. I made it in the slow cooker, but I may do a baked version soon.
  • 1 lb macaroni
  • 2 cups shredded cheese
  • 1 12oz can evaporated milk
  • 1 1/2 cups 1% milk (can probably use skim as well)
  • 1 egg
  • Red Pepper Flakes
  • 1 bottle barbecue sauce (I used whatever Mark bought me, use whatever type suits your fancy - I'm not sure how vinegar based sauce will come out though)
  • salt and pepper
  • breadcrumbs
  • 6 qt slow cooker (for smaller, halve or quarter recipe)
  • small bowl
  • pot, colander, slotted spoon
  • not-slotted spoon
  • 2 dishtowels (clean!)
  1. Cook macaroni until al dente. Drain. Grease slow cooker. Pour macaroni into slow cooker.
  2. In a separate bowl, mix evaporated milk, milk, and egg.
  3. Pour milk mixture over macaroni, stir to distribute evenly. Add red pepper flakes, salt, and pepper. Add one cup of cheese.
  4. Place 2 dishtowels over slow cooker, then put on lid (this absorbs condensation so the macaroni does not get all soggy.)
  5. Allow to cook for 30-40 minutes, until most of the liquid has boiled off. Add another cup of cheese and half a bottle of barbecue sauce. Stir to combine.
  6. Allow to cook for another 30-40 minutes. It should start looking pretty mac and cheesy at this point. Add the rest of the cheese, more barbecue sauce, and taste test. Do not stand over the crockpot eating out of it because its just too delicious.
  7. Once the sauce is a flavor and consistency of your liking, add breadcrumbs to the top and spray with vegetable oil or dot with butter if you want them to really brown.
  8. You now have two options - allow the slow cooker to cook for another hour to crisp up the breadcrumbs, or throw the whole thing under the broiler. I picked option 2 because people were here and dinner needed to be on the table. It's done when the breadcrumbs are brown.
I'll be working on a stovetop version soon, but I think the crockpot is best for slowly adding more barbecue sauce and I wanted to test this recipe out.

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