Not Quite Lobster Cajun Mac N Cheese.
You can cook Not Quite Lobster Cajun Mac N Cheese using 17 simple ingredients and 13 easy steps. Learn how to cook delicious meal.
Ingredients of Not Quite Lobster Cajun Mac N Cheese
- It’s of Cellantani pasta (looks like actual corkscrews with holes in the center, or "twisty tubes").
- You need of medium onion – minced.
- Prepare of butter.
- You need of all-purpose flour.
- Prepare of heavy cream.
- It’s of milk.
- You need of cayenne pepper (start with just 1/4 tsp for less heat, adjust to taste as necessary).
- Prepare of Sriracha (again, you may want to start with half and add more to taste).
- Prepare of Old Bay seasoning.
- It’s of worcestershire sauce.
- You need of salt (more or less to personal taste).
- It’s of black pepper.
- Prepare of red pepper flakes (optional).
- Prepare of extra sharp cheddar cheese – shredded.
- Prepare of Crawdad/Crawfish tails (fresh or frozen)- cooked, shelled, deveined.
- You need of panko breadcrumbs.
- It’s of extra virgin olive oil.
Not Quite Lobster Cajun Mac N Cheese step by step
- First and foremost, you will prep your crawdads. For simplicity I use a 12oz bag of frozen, fully cooked and prepped tails I can find at our local grocery story. The brand is Bordeaux's. To prep these, place the frozen package in cold water until thawed, about 30 minutes. When thawed carefully cut open package, pour crawdad tails into a colander and rinse under cold, running water. Shake excess water out of colander and pour out onto a paper towel lined plate (several layers thick). Cover with a few more paper towels and gently press to absorb moisture. Set aside. If you WANT to start from fresh, raw crawdads and go through all the extra work to get their tails that's up to you. I prefer to cut out a lot more work and mess. Plus you'll have to buy (or find, if you hunt your own) a LOT of crawdads for 12oz of tails..
- Preheat oven to 450°F. Grease bottom and sides of a 2 quart casserole dish with about 1 tsp butter or spray with nonstick cooking spray (we used a deep dish). In a small bowl combine panko breadcrumbs and olive oil, stir well with a fork to coat. Set dish and breadcrumbs aside for later..
- Now, onto the actual makin'! Bring a large pot of salted water to boil over medium high heat. Add pasta, bring back to a boil for 10 minutes, until pasta is barely al dente. When done drain pasta in colander (do not rinse!) and set aside..
- While your pasta is cooking you can begin making your sauce. In a large sauce pan over medium heat melt the butter. Add minced onions and cook until translucent, about 2 minutes..
- Add flour to sauce pan. Use whisk to stir into butter and onion to make a rue. Cook for about 2 minutes and rue begins to turn golden. This cooks out that raw flour taste and gives a more nutty flavor..
- Turn heat up to medium high. While constantly whisking, slowly add heavy cream followed by milk. Whisk quickly until completely smooth, no rue clumps remain..
- Bring to a low boil while whisking regularly. Turn heat back down to medium and gently simmer, whisking constantly, until sauce begins to thicken. About 5 minutes..
- Turn off heat. Add all seasonings and spices (I attached them to this step for quick reference). Whisk until well incorporated. Add 2 cups of the shredded cheese and whisk until completely melted and sauce is smooth..
- Transfer crawdads from plate to sauce. Gently fold in until they're all combined. Taste your sauce. Adjust seasoning as needed to suit your taste for salt and spiciness..
- Add drained pasta to sauce. Gently stir until completely combined. It should look kind of "soupy" at this point..
- Transfer mac n cheese to prepared casserole. Top with remaining cup of cheese followed by breadcrumb mixture. Bake in preheated oven for 20 minutes, until top is bubbly and breadcrumbs are golden..
- When done carefully remove from oven. Let rest 10 minutes. Serve as your main dish with a salad or favorite veggies on the side..
- Note: You can use other pastas good for mac.n cheese such as elbow macaroni, rotini, penne, shells, etc., but we prefer cellantani because we think its shape holds the sauce and any mix-ins we add to mac n cheese perfectly..