We make goat cheese here at the farm once or twice a week to ensure we don't waste any of the wonderful milk our 3 dairy goats give us. One of the ways we like to use the remainder that doesn't get smeared on crusty bread or spooned onto pizza is to make mac-n-cheese. Previously to owning goats, I hadn't been able to indulge in this dish, since I have problems digesting pasteurized milk. Now that I've got raw milk to make this tasty dish with, it's a little easier on my delicate constitution We eat it at least once a week now! For those of you with lactose intolerance, this might be a great recipe for you to try out.
I'm a big fan of creamy macaroni and cheese, and often times the baked stuff tends to dry out kind of fast. That's why I prefer making a thick, savory cheese sauce and coating the pasta before topping with a buttery toasted breadcrumb mixture. It's really some of the best mac I've ever had, if I do say so myself!
Here's what you need to make it:
1 package of pasta such as elbow, penne, shells or orecchiette , cooked al dente.
1 cup of fresh goat cheese
1 1/2 cups of goat milk (or cow's milk if you prefer)
1/4 cup of butter, lard, duck fat or bacon grease
3 tablespoons of all purpose flour
1/4 cup of pecorino romano or parmesan cheese, grated.
1 tsp of smoked paprika
1 tsp sea salt
1/4 teaspoon of nutmeg
ground black pepper to taste
1 cup of panko breadcrumbs
a pinch of salt
2 tablespoons of butter
1/2 tablespoon of minced fresh parsley
Here's how you make it:
Cook pasta before starting the sauce. Strain and place back in the pot it was cooked in, covering it to keep it warm.
In a medium sauce pan, over medium heat melt the butter or fat for the mac. Slowly add flour, whisking as you pour to create a roux. As the roux gets to a slightly golden, toasty color add the goat milk and continue to whisk lightly. Once incorporated, add the goat cheese and grated parmesan, and continue to whisk until smooth. Feel free to add more milk if the mixture is too thick. It should be a silky, creamy consistency but not runny. Season with salt & pepper, paprika and nutmeg.
In a small saute pan on medium heat, melt the butter for the bread crumbs. Add panko and salt and stir to get the breadcrumbs evenly coated with butter. Allow to toast, stirring often. Once evenly golden brown, add minced parsley and set aside uncovered.
Add sauce to the pot with the strained pasta and stir to coat evenly. Serve immediately in a shallow bowl and top with bread crumbs.