Southwest Shrimp Macaroni and Cheese
1 lb. short cut pasta
2 cups water
2 cups heavy cream
4 T butter
½ cup onion, finely chopped
½ cup diced Poblano pepper
½ cup diced red pepper
½ cup flour
1 tsp chili powder
½ tsp ground cumin
White pepper (to taste)
Kosher salt (to taste)
4-6 oz. Mexican shredded cheese
½ lb. shrimp, peeled, deveined and cut into small pieces
1. Cook the pasta in a pot of boiling, salted water until tender, about 8-10 minutes. Drain and cool under running water. Set aside.
2. In a heavy saucepan, combine the water and cream. Scald the mixture over medium heat. Remove from the heat and hold in a warm place.
3. In another heavy saucepan, add the butter. Heat the butter over medium heat until it melts. Add the onion and diced peppers, and cook until the vegetables are soft and the onions translucent. Add the flour and spices and whisk to combine. Cook the mixture over low heat for 2-3 minutes, stirring constantly. Do not brown the mixture.
4. While whisking, slowly add the warm cream and water mixture. Stir to combine with the whisk, and then switch to a wooden spoon. Cook the sauce over low heat for about 30 minutes.
5. Stir in the cheese over low heat for 2-4 minutes. Do no overheat of the cheese will become stringy.
6. Combine the noodles and shrimp with the sauce. Pour into a buttered, ceramic or glass baking dish.
7. Place the dish in a preheated 350 degree oven for about 40 minutes
8. Let the casserole sit for 5 minutes before serving.