Manyghetti and cheese

My family makes most everything from scratch. That means as a kid we never had Kraft macaroni and cheese. My dad would make a big batch of “manyghetti” — that is, all the leftover pasta shapes in the cabinet with sharp cheddar cheese, garlic, parsley, and maybe some parmesan. I’d top my mac with Tabasco sauce to ward off any little siblings who might want a bite.

To this day, manyghetti remains my favorite comfort food, but I also like to make my own version.

Since Stephen and I are going to do the South Beach Diet until Mexico next month, I wanted to say a big “GOODBYE PASTA” and make something cheesy, peppery and gosh darn delicious.

About 1 pound of whatever pasta you have lying around. In this case, bowties, little O’s and elbows
about 1/2 cup milk
about 2 Tbs butter
about 1 cup of shredded sharp cheddar
1 clove of garlic, smashed
1/2 tsp dijon mustard
about 1-2 Tbs Wondra flour
salt and pepper
dash of Tabasco sauce

In a salted pot of water, boil the pasta in order of longest to shortest cooking time. While pasta cooks, place the milk, garlic and butter in a big serving bowl and microwave for 30 seconds. Mix in the flour and microwave another 30 seconds. If sauce is too thick, stir in a little more milk. If too thin, stir in a little more flour and microwave another 30 seconds. Stir in the dijon, salt, pepper, Tabasco and half the cheese. Drain the pasta. Add pasta to the bowl and combine. Stir in the rest of the cheese.

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