I adapted this from the February issue of Food Network Magazine. The original has andouille sausage and 1 tbsp of cajun seasoning. I lowered the amount of cajun seasoning to 1 tsp as it has like 300 mg sodium in 1/4 tsp. I thought that the sausage and the cheese had probably 2,000mg sodium as it was so I lowered the seasoning a bit. Still about 3,000mg for 4 servings (which comes to 750mg without the other ingredients per serving as it is) but since I used chicken sausage, which is a bit lower in salt, fat and calories, I added some chile flakes too so that I would get the heat of the cayenne in the cajun seasoning.
Anyway, it is really good. I just served it garnished with some chopped cilantro.
Spicy Macaroni & Cheese
1 lb pasta, any small shape
2 tbsp olive oil*
6 oz sausage**
1 bunch scallions (both green & white), thinly sliced
1 bell pepper, seeded and diced
1 tsp Cajun spice blend*** (plus 1 tsp chile flakes)
2 tbsp all purpose flour
2 cups whole milk
8 oz cheddar cheese, cut in cubes****
Parmesan cheese, sprinkled in at the end
Chopped Cilantro, for garnish
Bring a pot of salted water to a boil. Add the pasta and cook until al dente, about 1 minute short of the directions. Reserve 1 cup of pasta cooking water. Drain pasta.
Meanwhile, combine the oil and sausage in a large skillet over HIGH heat and cook, stirring, until the sausage starts to brown, about 2 minutes. Stir in the scallions and bell pepper and cook until the veggies are slightly softened, another 3 minutes. Gradually whisk in the milk and continue whisking until the sauce thickens, about 5 more minutes. Add the cheese, stirring, until it has melted and the sauce is smooth.
Add the cheese sauce to the pasta and mix well. Sprinkle with some parmesan cheese and garnish with cilantro.
*original calls for extra virgin.
**original calls for Andouille. I only had some chicken sausage so that is what I used.
***original called for 1 tbsp.
****original called for cheddar but I used half American and half Mozzarella as that is what I had.
Yield: 4 servings
Source: adapted from Feb 2012 Food Network Magazine
Posted by RisaG 4/25/12