What if we lived in a world, where anything is possible? A world, where we can take mac & cheese along with us as a practical picnic snack? Or as an easy to share finger food for a party? What if you just think, that you don’t want to serve the same style of mac & cheese and yearn for a creative reinvention? I made these delicious balls of golden awesomeness using a cake pop maker (if you still need one of those in your life, click here).
Servings: 30 balls (5 balls = 1 serving) * Preparation time: 45 min * Start to finish: 1 hr 30 min
- 2 tablespoons of butter
- 1 cup of milk
- 1 cup of shredded mature cheddar
- 8 ounces small pasta shells
- 1 teaspoon of mustard
- 1 pinch of cayenne pepper
- ½ teaspoon of garlic powder
- 1/4 teaspoon of nutmeg
- 2 cups of flour + 2 extra tablespoons for the sauce
- 2 eggs
- 4 ounces panko breadcrumbs
- 1/4 cup of vegetable oil (for the cake pop maker)
- Salt and pepper
Start by cooking the noodles, drain them and then set them aside until the sauce is ready. For the sauce, use a large pot and proceed to melt the butter, then add the milk. Once the milk has heated up, but isn’t boiling (!), drizzle two tablespoons of flour in. Make sure to stir it well, until the flour is fully blended inand there are no chunks in the sauce base. Most recipes will tell you to first add the flour and only then pour in the milk. I think this just this just makes things more challenging than they need to be without adding any benefits to the taste. So go easy and simply add the milk first and only then the flour. Continue by adding the mustard, cayenne pepper, garlic, nutmeg, salt and pepper. Afterwards drizzle the grated cheese in and stir until it is fully melted and you have a smooth sauce, turn of the heat and then add the noodles and stir them in the sauce. Pour the mac and cheese in a casserole dish and place it in the fridge until it is firm (this will take approx. 45 minutes)
For the mac and cheese pops: Crack the eggs into a bowl and whisk them. Prepare two additional bowls, one with the two cups of flour, the other one with bread crumbs. Bring the cake pop maker up to temperature. Meanwhile scoop balls out of the mac and cheese casserole by using a large spoon or an ice cream scooper (which ever fits best to your cake pop maker). Roll the balls in the flour bowl, then bath them in the egg mix and finally roll them in the breadcrumbs. Once the first batch is done, use a cooking brush to oil the cake pop molds and fill them with the mac and cheese balls. Let them bake until they are golden brown. This should take approx. 5 minutes per batch. While the first round is baking, prepare the second round.
P.S. If you don’t have a cake pop maker and don’t really want to invest in one, you can just as well fry the mac and cheese balls in a pan.
P.P.S. Try making mac and cheese waffles, in that case, skip the flour, eggs and bread crumbs process and you are all set.