Clara’s third birthday is quickly approaching, so I’ve been brainstorming ideas for her birthday party. She asked for “a party with my babies and I wear a dress.” I love thinking about her party this time of year because, really, there’s not a lot going on in January. However, I know some of you are getting excited about another party coming up in a few days – a Super Bowl party. For me, it’s just any other Sunday, but I know many of you will be celebrating. No matter what type of party you’re dreaming up right now, this recipe is a great one to add to your list of potential ones to make. It’s a contender for Clara’s birthday party (currently tied with my other party favorite, ham and cheese hand pies), and I think it would be great as part of any party spread.
For the most part, I think it’s true to say that most people like mac and cheese. I am a big fan of it myself, which should come as no surprise given the numerous recipes for it I’ve got on the site. This one is what I’m dubbing party mac and cheese because it is the perfect individual serving size for just about any gathering. These aren’t just cute, either. They’re filled with herby Boursin, smoky gouda and sharp cheddar. There’s a crisp, buttery crust to go with the creamy cheese. This recipe is just an all-around winner.
- COOK TIME:
- YIELD: 18
12 ounces elbow macaroni noodles
2 cups butter cracker crumbs
1½ cups shredded sharp cheddar cheese, divided
1½ cups shredded gouda, divided
6 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
1 (5.2 ounce) package Boursin garlic herb cheese
2 tablespoons unsalted butter
2 large eggs
¾ cup milk
¼ cup sour cream or Greek yogurt
¼ teaspoon salt
Pinch red pepper flakes
These can be reheated, but you can also make them a few hours in advance by making them up to the point where they’re baked and refrigerating them. Simply bake from the refrigerator when you’re nearing the time to serve them.
Heat oven to 350º. Bring a large pot of water to boil, and cook the pasta according to the package directions until just shy of al dente. Drain well.
While the pasta is cooking, lightly grease standard size muffin pans with cooking spray. In a medium bowl, combine the cracker crumbs, ¼ cup each of the cheddar and gouda, and melted butter. Mix well with a fork until combined, then divide the mixture among the muffin wells. Using a flat bottomed glass that’s been sprayed lightly with cooking spray, tamp down the cracker mixture.
Once the pasta is cooked and drained, add it to a large mixing bowl with the remaining shredded cheese, the Boursin and butter. Combine the eggs, milk and sour cream in a liquid measuring cup. Whisk to combine, then pour the mixture over the pasta. Stir in the salt and red pepper flakes, then mix until everything is combined.
Divide the macaroni mixture between the prepared muffin wells. Bake until light golden, about 25 minutes. Allow to cool in the muffin pans at least 10-15 minutes, then carefully remove from the pan and serve warm.