Tuesday, February 19, 2013

Dairy-free Mac n Cheese

When my family quit eating dairy, I longed for mac n cheese.  Every now and then I get a hankering, but for the most part, I've gotten over it.  That is, until I discovered Daiya "cheese."  Then, all of a sudden the creamy, cheesy possibilities seemed endless.  I was told by a friendly employee at my favorite health food store that this stuff would melt just like regular cheese.  I wouldn't go so far as to say that.  But, it did pretty well.  Doesn't it look larping?  (Don't know that word?  Refer back to my biscuit post.)

Now for the controversial part, goat cheese.  I love the stuff, and used a little in this dish.  But, I'm not sure if it's truly allergen-free.  Every now and then after eating goat cheese, I get a little tummy ache.  I suffer no other ill effects like I do when consuming cow's milk or cheese, but I suspect some goat cheeses must have a small quantity of something suspicious in them.  Anyone know?  I have found the Trader Joe's Goat Cheese Cheddar to be tasty and easily digestible.  Oh, and don't you love my fancy dancy cheese shredder?  Seeing as how I rarely shed cheese, I simply haven't put it at the top of my priority list.  Oh, and next time I will stick strictly to Daiya, this time I was in a pinch and didn't have enough in the fridge.  

Dairy-free Creamy Mac n Cheese
1 (16 oz) package penne pasta
2 cups rice milk
3 tablespoons olive oil
4 tablespoons rice flour
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 teaspoons Dijon mustard (want to know a secret?  I only had regular yellow mustard and it tasted just fine)
3 cups "Cheese" of your choice - I used a combo of Daiya's mozzarella and cheddar and then shredded up some goat cheese I had 
A few dashes of onion powder

1.  Cook pasta according to directions.  Drain, set aside.

2.  Scald the rice milk and set aside.

3.  Heat the olive oil in a heavy saucepan over medium heat.  Add the brown rice flour, stirring for a couple minutes.  It will clump a bit, this is your roux.

4.  Add the rice milk a little at a time, whisking continuously until smooth.  Add the salt and mustard and bring to a simmer.  

5.  Add all but 1/2 cup of the cheese and keep stirring for several minutes.  It will take a few minutes for the cheese to melt completely, and it will look a little clumpy as pictured above.  Don't worry! Preheat the oven to broil.  

6.  Add the pasta to the cheese sauce and stir to combine.  

7.  Transfer the pasta to a baking dish.  Top with the remaining cheese.  Put under the broiler for about 5 minutes until the cheese has melted and is browning.  Remove from oven and let rest several minutes before serving.  


1 comment:

  1. So, curious to the ingredients in Daiya cheese and inspired by this post, I googled Daiya cheese ingredients. And I was pleasantly surprised to find that it is free of other allergens as well! For some reason I thought it was made of soy products and I don't do soy. But I was also really happy to see that its made with good for you fats and Non-GMO ingredients. Daiya is going on my next grocery list. :-)