Recipe 52: Everything Bagel Mac and CheesePosted: January 5, 2015
When you go gluten-free, whether by choice or by necessity, you end up missing out on a lot of things. Some are things that it’s probably better to do without, like the majority of a fast-food menu. Some are little indulgences you don’t even think of until you can’t have them anymore.
Regular bagels are one of those indulgences.
Don’t get me wrong, there are companies that make gluten free bagels. But I can’t just go to the local bagel joint and pick up a quick meal, nor can I grab my choice of flavors from the bag brought home for the family over the holidays. It’s not one of those things I moon over constantly, but I do feel a slight twinge of sadness when I can’t partake.
Luckily for me, the genius at The Food in My Beard has my back. An everything-bagel mac and cheese? Um, yes!
In preparing to do this recipe, I found two companies that make a gluten-free everything-bagel. I used the one made by Udi’s, as I’ve had their plain bagels and enjoyed them. Katz also makes one. If you know of others, drop me a line!
Everything Bagel Mac and Cheese (from The Food in My Beard)
- 12 oz cream cheese (1 and a half packages)
- 8 oz fontina cheese (our grocery store didn’t have any, but a quick search said you can use provolone, gruyere, or gouda as a replacement; I used gruyere)
- 8 oz jack cheese (I assumed this meant monterey jack)
- 1 cup cream (I used Half-and-Half)
- 2 tablespoons butter (I never saw where this went in the recipe, so I left it out)
- 12 scallions
- 2 white onions
- 3 large cloves garlic
- 1.5 tablespoons poppy seed
- 1.5 tablespoons sesame seed
- 2 everything bagels
- 1 pound elbow pasta (I used corn elbows)
- pecorino romano
Chop the onion and garlic. On a large baking sheet mix the onion and garlic with a small amount of oil and salt. Bake at 350, stirring occasionally, until browned and crispy. Should take about an hour at least. When just about browned, mix in the sesame and poppy seeds, and cook another 5-10 minutes to lightly toast.
Mix together the cream, fontina, jack, and cream cheeses. Chop the scallions and add to the mixture.
Boil some salted water and add the pasta. Mix and cook. When the pasta has a few more minutes of cooking time, scoop about 1/2 cup of pasta water into the cheeses. Mix well to get everything to start melting. Finally strain the pasta and add it. Mix well and all the cheeses should have melted and formed a sauce.
Pour into a baking dish. Mix in the cooked everything bagel spice mixture(you may not want all of it in there, use discretion and taste). Finally, toast the bagels and food process to crumbs. Use this mixture as breadcrumbs on top of the pasta. Also top with pecorino romano. Bake at 500 for about 10 minutes until bubbly, browned, and delicious.
One downside to this recipe is mine, not the original chef’s: I toasted my gluten-free bagels twice and they still wouldn’t crumble. I ended up tearing them into pieces, but it was more like croutons than bread crumbs. I kind of picked them off the top and ate them separate from the mac itself. If you can have regular bagels, this will probably work better for you.
As for the main bulk of the recipe, you better be sure you like onions and scallions and garlic, because the flavor is pronounced. In fact, despite the fact that this is a mac and cheese, the seasoning was much more pronounced as a flavor than the cheese sauce. This is not a bad thing, but keep this in mind.
I asked Loverman what he thought of the recipe. He gave it a simple “not bad,” then proceeded to have seconds.