Oh man, this is a sandwich in a mac & cheese outfit. These little nuggets taste exactly like a monte cristo! I mean, it’s totally a pasta miracle. And if you guys don’t want to fry this up, it’s ok! I know it’s early-ish on in the year and we’re trying to be health-concious. So, if you don’t want to fry it, then don’t bother. Bake it up and enjoy straight away, but just know that frying your feelings helps sometimes!
Let’s express our true feelings with mac & cheese, ok? Because these nuggets would love to be your Valentine.
And what says “I love you” more than fried cheese-y pasta? Because goodness knows there are two ways into my heart, at least… food and loving my pup, so hug Elliot and fry me some mac & cheese and I’m yours for life.
Please note: this recipe was developed for compensation as part of my contribution to Wisconsin Cheese. Click HERE to view this recipe as well as other great mac & cheese recipes remixes from other bloggers!
Monte Cristo Mac & Cheese Nuggets
(Makes 24 nuggets, serves 6)
For mac and cheese –
- 3 cups uncooked noodles, rigatoni, macaroni, or penne
- 6 T butter
- 6 T flour
- 1 cup + 2 T milk
- 3/4 cup sour cream
- heaping 1/3 cup grated parmesan
- salt and pepper to taste
- 1 T garlic mustard, or Dijon
- 1 t dried minced onions
- 1/2 t garlic powder
- pinch cayenne pepper
- pinch red pepper flakes
- 1 cup grated Wisconsin Gruyere
- 1/2 cup grated Gouda
- 3 strips Prosciutto, crisped on a hot iron skillet and chopped
For frying and serving –
- 33 oz. vegetable oil
- ½ cup flour
- 3 eggs, beaten
- 1 ½ cups panko bread crumbs
- 1 jar raspberry jam
- Cook your noodles to al dente, 10-12 minutes depending on the noodle. Drain and rinse with cold water. Set aside. Preheat your oven to 350F. Spray an 8-inch square baking dish with cooking spray.
- In the warm pan used for the noodles, melt the butter. Return pan to medium-low and add flour. Stir until combined. Stir in milk. When thickened add the sour cream, Parmesan, salt, pepper, and spices. When thoroughly mixed, add the Gruyere and Gouda. Remove from heat and stir until all of the cheese is melted. Taste and add more spices to taste. Mix in the Prosciutto until evenly distributed. Pour into the prepared pan and smooth until even. Bake for 30 minutes. Remove from the oven and cool at room temperature for 20 minutes. Cover with plastic wrap and chill overnight.
- Make your mac and cheese nuggets. Heat oil in a large Dutch oven until 350F, using a candy thermometer. Meanwhile, divide the flour, eggs, and panko into three separate bowls. Slice mac and cheese into 24 rectangles, about an inch wide and 3 inches long. Dredge slices in flour, then egg, then panko. Set aside until oil is hot.
- Fry mac and cheese nuggets for 3-4 minutes in hot oil, until golden. Using a slotted spoon, transfer to a paper towel lined baking sheet. Continue until all nuggets are fried. Allow to cool slightly, then serve with raspberry jam and a sprinkling of powdered sugar.
YAY! Click HERE for a printable pdf of the recipe above.
Espresso your feelings!
P.S. I drank this before the brunch! A pleasant breakfast beer indeed!