Here two classic favorites are combined macaroni and cheese and cauliflower in cheese sauce to make a standout casserole that is rich and satisfying.

SERVES 4

1 cup macaroni, cooked and drained (2 cups cooked)

1 small to medium cauliflower, cut into bite-size florets and steamed until tender

4 tablespoons butter

Вј cup unbleached white flour

2в…“ cups milk

2 cups (8 ounces) grated sharp Cheddar cheese (preferably Wisconsin Cheddar)

1 cup (4 ounces) grated Monterey Jack and jalapeГ±o pepper cheese

ВЅ teaspoon salt

Freshly ground pepper to taste

2 tablespoons Bread Crumbs

  1. Preheat the oven to 350В°F. Make sure the macaroni is well drained. If you want to cook it in advance, then toss it with a little oil to prevent sticking. Make sure the cauliflower is well drained.
  2. Melt the butter in a medium saucepan over medium heat. Whisk in the flour and cook this roux for 2 minutes, whisking constantly.
  3. Whisk in the milk and cook, whisking often, until it thickens and begins to boil, about 7 minutes. Remove from the heat and stir in the cheeses, salt, and pepper. May be prepared to this point up to 24 hours in advance. Chill the macaroni, cauliflower, and sauce separately. When ready to cook, heat the sauce and proceed with the next step.
  4. Put the macaroni and cauliflower in a 10-by-10-inch baking dish (or something comparable) and pour on the sauce. Toss gently to mix. Sprinkle on the bread crumbs.
  5. Bake for 20 to 25 minutes, or until browned and bubbly.

NOTE: If you do not have jalapeo pepper cheese then you can use all cheddar cheese and add 1 jalapeo pepper, seeded and minced. (See the Glossary for advice on handling chiles.)