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Life can get very busy. During the week, we are usually consumed with work, school and every day errands. In my family, we have declared Sunday’s as “family day.” This means, we spend it together no matter what. We sometimes spend it indoors, lounging around the house. Sometimes, Sunday’s are spent out and around town. The one thing that does not change is that Sunday dinners are always at home, at our own table.
The temperature is starting to drop, so this Sunday, I’ve decided to make it extra special. I’ve made my family a delicious twist on the ordinary mac and cheese. It’s cold outside, but this comfort food will warm you up right away!
Mac & Cheese with Sun-dried tomatoes and basil
16 oz Penne Rigate
8oz package of blended cheese (I use Sargento 6 cheese Italian)
1 pint heavy cream
½ cup fresh basil, roughly chopped
4 pieces of sun-dried tomatoes
2 tbsp of paprika
1 tbsp of freshly cracked black pepper
1 tsp salt
1 tsp of garlic powder
Fresh Parmesan cheese for sprinkling
In a medium pot, bring 2 quarts of water to a boil. Add two tablespoons of salt to the water. Drop the pasta into the water and continue to boil until pasta is al dente*. (about 8-10min)
While your pasta is boiling, pour the heavy cream into a large saucepan. Turn the heat on to medium and start adding the package of cheese a little at time. Keep stirring the mixture as you add the cheese. You want to make sure the cheese is blended well into the heavy cream. You want it to be
smooth and creamy with no lumps. Start adding the paprika, salt, garlic powder, and black pepper. Keep stirring until all of the ingredients are well incorporated.
Add the sun-dried tomatoes to your pasta water. This will allow them to rehydrate. All they need is about two or three minutes and they will be ready to be removed and chopped.
Drain the pasta and add it to the cheese sauce. Keep stirring until all pasta is evenly coated with the cheese sauce. Add the chopped sun-dried tomatoes and fresh basil. Stir.
You can sprinkle some freshly grated parmesan cheese and basil to your dish. Enjoy!