1 lb macaroni
1 stick butter
1 quart milk
10 oz sharp cheddar cheese *
Dash of white pepper
Dash of mustard powder
Dash of seasoned salt
5 heaping tablespoons of flour (basically one cup)
Optional: Corn flakes for topping
Total time from start to finish is less than an hour: 20-30 minutes for preparation and 25-30 minutes to cook. Same amount of time even if you double the batch! Start boiling the water first since it takes longer than making the cheese sauce.
Cook the macaroni as directed. (Optional: add minced dry onions to water for flavor.)
In a separate pan, melt butter and add milk. Grate or chop cheese into small pieces for easier melting then add to the hot milk. Whisk in flour and dashes of seasoning, making sure the mixture does not burn or stick to the bottom of the pan. Mixture should thicken within a few minutes. Removed from burner when bubbles appear or mixture feels thick enough. (Add more flour if necessary for thickening but normally 5 heaping tablespoons is enough.)
Dump macaroni into a colander after it is cooked and prepare casserole dish. Stir macaroni and cheese mixture so all noodles are covered.
Preheat the oven to 350; macaroni should cook for 25-30 minutes. Add more time if the casserole has been refrigerated or frozen.
Optional: With about 10 minutes cooking left, sprinkle corn flakes on top of the macaroni & cheese. This will give the dish a crunchy topping!
* Recently started purchasing 10oz packs of pre-cut cheddar cheese. Only have to cut the block of cheese in thirds to make pieces small enough to melt quickly. Easier than grating a whole block of cheese. (7oz packs of pre-sliced cheese have 26 slices; need 37 slices to equal 10oz.)