Indian-style macaroni and cheese

Don’t be put off by the list of ingredients, they are all pantry staples which I’m sure you have. I adore Indian food and who doesn’t love mac and cheese? This combination is superb!

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Serves 6 to 8

3 tbsp butter
4 cups dried macaroni (14 oz)
2 tbsp minced fresh ginger
2 cloves garlic, crushed
1 onion, minced
1 tbsp garam masala
1 tsp ground cumin (I roast mine)
1 tsp ground turmeric
1/2 tsp smoked paprika
1/4 tsp ground cardamon
1/4 tsp red chile pepper
2 ripe tomatoes, diced
1/4 cup all-purpose flour
a pinch of pepper
3 cups whole milk
4 cups grated mature cheddar (about 14 oz)
1/3 cup breadcrumbs

Preheat the oven to 350 F. Grease a 9″ by 13″ ovenproof dish with 1 tbsp of the butter.

Fill a large pot with water and place it over medium heat. Bring to a rolling boil and add a good amount of salt. Add the macaroni and cook until tender, but still firm. About 8 to 10 mins. Drain.

Melt the remaining butter in a large skillet over medium heat. Add the ginger, garlic and onions. Stir and cook until the onions are just beginning to turn golden, about 5 minutes. Add the garam masala, cumin, turmeric, paprika, cardamon, chili powder and tomatoes and cook for 5 minutes.
Add the flour and a pinch of salt and pepper and stir for about 2 minutes. Slowly add the milk and continue to stir as it thickens. Cook until the sauce is thick enough to coat the back of a spoon, 15 to 20 minutes. Add the 3 cups of cheese and stir until melted.

Add the drained macaroni to the baking dish and then pour over the cheese sauce, stirring well and making sure all the macaroni is well coated.
Sprinkle the top with the rest of the grated cheese and the breadcrumbs and bake until the top is golden and the macaroni is hot and bubbling. About 30 to 40 minutes. Serve hot

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