This is one of my very favorite things to cook! And plus, Teri had asked for a casserole version of Mac & Cheese. This reheats wonderfully for lunches even days after the first serving!
Modification on Betty Crocker's version
2 cups uncooked elbow macaroni (7 ounces)
1/4 cup margarine (butter would work too)
1/4 cup flour
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon pepper
1/4 teaspoon ground mustard
2 cups milk
2 cups shredded or cubed Cheddar/Colby/other good cheese (8 ounces)
Italian Flavored Breadcrumbs (I think I get Progresso brand)
Prepare macaroni like the package says. (8-10 minutes in boiling water, I think). Put this in a strainer to wait for the sauce.
Melt butter in saucepan until bubbly over medium heat. Use a good stirring utensil (wisp, heavy fork, etc.)to stir in the flour with the butter. Stir frequently, until butter flour mixture is bubbly and a thick consistency. Add seasonings (salt, pepper, ground mustard) into this. Put milk in microwavable measuring cup and heat slightly in the microwave (1-2 minutes) - this will help it not cool down the butter/flour mixture. Slowly add the milk into the bubbling flour/butter mixture - I do it at about 1/2 cup at a time. This will make the mixture not take as long to get thick (i.e., less stirring time on your tired wrist!). Stir in all of the milk, and vigilantly stir until it boils. This will take a while (time depends on type of pan, heat you have it at, etc. But don't turn the heat up too much because it will burn. Once the boiling starts, stir a bit longer to make sure its nice and thick. Add the cheese and turn the heat down to medium-lowish. Stir until the cheese melts and you'll have a delicious sauce :-)
Add the macaroni into the sauce. If your pan isn't big enough, use the casserole dish that you'll be baking with - put the macaroni in and gently fold it together. I sprinkle a bit of cheese or even parmesean cheese on top of this, and then sprinkle with breadcrumbs.
Make at 350 for 30minutes - watch until its nice and bubbly! Serve and enjoy! :-)