Honey-Mustard Chicken Mac ‘n Cheese with Caramelized Red Onions and Potato Bun Crumb Topping

by Fanny Slater 1:24 PM, January 20, 2017

Aired January 24, 2017

Serves 4-6

Leftover potato buns
1 teaspoon paprika
Kosher salt and coarse black pepper
1 pound cavatappi (corkscrew) pasta
4 tablespoons unsalted butter, divided
Leftover red onion, thinly sliced
1 tablespoon honey
2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
4 cups milk, warmed until lightly steaming
2 cups grated sharp white cheddar
1 cup grated Gruyere cheese
Freshly grated nutmeg
Leftover Rosemary Honey-Mustard Chicken Breasts, cut into chunks
1/4 cup grated Parmesan
Chopped parsley for garnish


Preheat the oven to 375°F and grease a large casserole dish.
In a food processor, pulse the leftover potato buns and paprika into fine breadcrumbs. Season with salt and pepper, and set aside.
Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Add the pasta and cook according to the package directions until al dente. Reserve 1/2 cup of the starchy cooking water and then drain the pasta. Set the pot aside.
In a large skillet, melt 2 tablespoons of the butter over medium-low heat. Add the onions and honey, and cook, stirring occasionally, until the onions are golden and caramelized, 15-20 minutes. Season with a pinch each of salt and pepper.
While the onions are caramelizing, make your roux: In the pasta pot over medium heat, add the remaining 2 tablespoons butter and the flour. Cook, stirring occasionally, for about 3 minutes. Slowly pour the warm milk into the roux, whisking constantly to avoid lumps. Cook, stirring frequently, until the sauce is thick—about 3-5 minutes.
Remove the sauce from heat and add in both cheeses and nutmeg, and stir until melted and smooth. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Add the noodles, caramelized red onions and chicken to the pot, and stir, using the starchy cooking water to thin if necessary, until all of the ingredients are thoroughly combined.
Pour the mixture into the casserole dish and sprinkle the parmesan and potato bun crumbs evenly over the top. Bake the casserole until the cheese is bubbly, about 30 minutes, then broil until the top is golden and crusty, about 2-3 minutes. Garnish with the chopped parsley.


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