Since our friend was throwing a cookout, I prepared the following dish to pair with the various grilled items for dinner. Such an easy dish and comforting too!
recipe from MyRecipes
1/4 cup butter or margarine, divided
2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
2 cups milk
1 (8-ounce) package shredded Cheddar-American cheese blend
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/8 teaspoon ground red pepper
1 (10-ounce) package frozen broccoli, thawed and coarsely chopped
8 ounces elbow macaroni, cooked
1/4 cup panko breadcrumbs or 1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese
Melt 2 tablespoons butter in a large saucepan over medium heat, and whisk in all-purpose flour; cook, whisking constantly, 2 minutes.
Whisk in milk gradually; cook, whisking constantly, 5 minutes or until mixture thickens. Remove from heat. Add shredded cheese, salt, and pepper, stirring until cheese melts. Stir in broccoli and pasta. Pour into a lightly greased 11- x 7-inch baking dish. Sprinkle with breadcrumbs; dot with remaining 2 tablespoons butter.
Bake at 350° for 25 to 30 minutes.
To lighten: Substitute equal portions reduced-calorie margarine, 2% reduced-fat milk, and 2% reduced-fat shredded sharp Cheddar cheese, and reduce salt to 1/4 teaspoon. Cook as directed, and pour into baking dish. Stir together remaining margarine, melted, and breadcrumbs; sprinkle over pasta mixture. Bake as directed, and let stand 5 minutes before serving.