I made this in 20 minutes last night before I had to run to my brother’s Christmas pageant! It remains my favorite food.
Ingredients (serves 6-8):
13oz (1 pkg) whole grain shells or preferred pasta
2 tbsp butter
2 tbsp flour
1 cup milk
8oz (1 pkg) sharp cheddar
8oz (1 pkg) marble cheddar
2 large avocados
handful fresh cilantro
3-4 cloves garlic, to taste
1/4 lime or equivalent
1/2 tsp cayenne red pepper
salt and pepper to taste
First, get the water boiling. I always forget, then cheat and try to use a medium-sized saucepan to make it boil faster. The pasta usually cooks better if you put a liberal amount of salt in it. Food Network says to make it like ocean water, but that seems excessive to me. When the water boils you will cook the pasta about 8-10 minutes or whatever it says on the package.
While the water heats up, cut the avocados open, take out the pit, and put the good stuff in a bowl. Roughly chop the cilantro and throw it in, as well as the lime, garlic, and cayenne pepper. If you want to add salt or pepper go for it, but I rarely do. Mash it all together with a fork.
Set that aside and melt the 2 tbsp of butter over medium heat. As soon as it is melted add the 2 tbsp of flower and whisk it until it is mixed. Constantly stir it until it is less white and more sandy brown. This only takes a minute or two. Then very slowly pour in the 1 cup of milk while still whisking. Cook this until it thickens, as shown below.
To this add 2 cups of cheese, using all the sharp cheddar before starting the marble cheddar. Keep stirring it while it melts. When it is melted, it is ready.
Drain the cooked pasta and pour it in your dish. Mix that with the cheese sauce. After getting the cheese mixed in completely, add the avocado sauce and mix that in too. Top with the remaining marble cheddar. I ran out when making this batch, so the cheese is a little bit lacking on top.
Set the oven on high broil and let the cheese on top toast until golden brown or however you prefer it. Keep a close eye on it or you will burn it. This usually takes me 1-2 minutes, depending on the oven.
This is a weird dish but it is delicious! Anything that combines avocados with cheesy noodles is comfort food at its finest.