Ok, i'm not normally one for cheesy recipe and post titles, but for this I couldn't resist. I'm delirious. I worked 13 hours yesterday. 5am - 6pm. Never really stopping, eating on the run. What fueled me through was the knowledge that if I completed all my work yesterday, I wouldn't have to go in to work today. You would think that after working all day I wouldn't want to come home and cook, but all I wanted to do was unwind and make a nice big bowl of broccoli soup. But I kinda also wanted to make mac and cheese. Unsure at the store, I bought ingredients for both, and in the end just tossed everything into one dish. This mac and cheese features 3 huge heads of broccoli and munster cheese hence the title.
At work they throw away what I like to call the "butt" of the slicing sausages. I usually try and grab these before people toss them out! Yesterday I was lucky enough to get the butt of the mortadella.
I diced it up and fried it in the hot oil until it browned up a bit. Keep that tasty mortadella oil in the pot though.
A very important step here is splitting the broccoli into stems and florets. Be very careful at this step and really split it up well leaving only very small florets in the floret pile. Dice up the stems and mix them with the onion and carrot.
Broccoli stems, onion, and carrot cooking up in the hot mortadella oil. Yum! Next is some butter and flour to make a quick roux, and milk and cheese to build the sauce. I mistakenly dumped a whole half gallon of milk in here thinking it was a quart, so I adjusted the recipe to accommodate. I think it was better in the end though with more liquid and a longer baking time.
Very tasty stuff. Very broccoli. Very mortadella.
The munster cheese was a welcome addition that brought a creamy and almost silky texture to certain bites. I've loved munster cheese for a long time but never consummated our relationship by putting it into a mac and cheese until now (too much?) I first started linking munster cheese as a drunk high school kid. We would sneak beers in my friends basement and then raid his fridge late at night. his mom always had munster cheese and we were known to eat a whole pound at a time!
This mac and cheese has a bit different ratios than I normally use, half because I wasn't planning on making it in the first place, and half because I had just worked a 13 hour day and made a few mistakes that I ended up just working into the recipe.
1 pound ditalini pasta
1 pound munster cheese
10 oz cheddar
½ gallon milk
3 big heads of broccoli
1 medium onion
Few cloves garlic
½ tablespoon flour
½ stick of butter
¼ pound mortadella
The first step is to separate the broccoli into stems and florets. Make sure to really seperate it, leaving only small florets. Cook the mortadella in a splash of oil until it browns. Remove from pan. Cook the onion, carrot, and broccoli stems until just starting to lightly brown, about 7-10 minutes. Add garlic. Add the butter and when it melts add flour and mix well. Add the milk stirring well to combine with the flour. Blend this mess with a hand blender or in a normal blender. (you don't NEED to do this step but I kinda wanted the veg to be smooth and in with the sauce. I was also too lazy to cut stuff uniformly so that's another reason I had to blend it.) Next add the broccoli florets and stir. Wait 2 minutes and start adding the grated cheeses slowly, stirring to combine. the sauce should be very liquidy. Boil the pasta for only 2 minutes. Strain and mix with the cheese sauce. Add in mortadella. Pour into baking dish. Top with breadcrumbs and bake for about an hour at 400. If the top isn't browned at the end, broil it.