RECIPE

Qué Pasta Mexican Mac ‘n Cheese

Find a ton of flavor without too much heat in this colorful mac topped with avocado and tomato.

Ingredients

  • 4 poblano peppers
  • Salt
  • 1 pound bowtie pasta or whole wheat penne pasta
  • 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil (EVOO)
  • 1 onion, finely chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic, grated or finely chopped
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 2 tablespoons flour
  • 1 cup chicken stock
  • 2 cups milk
  • Pepper
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons cumin (half a palmful)
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons coriander (half a palmful)
  • 2 1/2 cups shredded Mexican cheese blend or a mix of cheddar and queso fresco or Chihuahua cheeses
  • 2 small vine-ripened tomatoes, seeded and chopped
  • 1 firm avocado, diced
  • 4 scallions, chopped
  • Juice of 1 lime

Preparation

Pre-heat the broiler to high.

Blacken the poblanos on all sides in the broiler, 12-15 minutes. Place the peppers in a bowl and cover tightly with plastic wrap or place in a paper sack, cool for 10 minutes, then peel, seed and chop.

Bring a large pot of water to a boil for the pasta. Add the pasta and salt and cook to al dente.

Heat a saucepot over medium heat. Add the EVOO, onion and garlic and cook until tender, 6-7 minutes. Add the butter to the pan and melt, then stir in the flour and cook for a minute. Whisk in the stock, then the milk. Bring to a simmer; season with salt, pepper, cumin and coriander and thicken for 5 minutes. Stir in the cheese with wooden spoon and melt.

Drain the pasta and toss with the sauce and chopped poblano peppers. Serve in shallow bowls and top with tomatoes, avocados and scallions and drizzle with the lime juice.

This is one of many “Yum-o!” recipes – it’s good and good for you. To find out more about Yum-o!, Rachael’s nonprofit organization, go to www.yum-o.org.

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Rachael Ray