Recipe | Middle-of-Nowhere Mac 'n' Beer Cheese
Recipe from The Campout Cookbook by Jen Stevenson and Marnie Hanel
Our friends Jen and Marnie put a twist on how to serve the Olympia Provisions Public House beer cheese. Check it out and put this on the menu for your next camping trip!
1 cup heavy cream
1 cup whole milk
1 cup beer (preferably German)
1 white onion, finely diced
2 tablespoons cornstarch
10 ounces American cheese, cut into pieces
4 ounces white cheddar, grated
Pinch of freshly grated nutmeg
Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper
12 ounces elbow macaroni
2 tablespoons unsalted butter
3/4 cup panko bread crumbs
1 cup shredded Monterey Jack
1. Make beer cheese: combine the cream, milk, beer and onion in a large saucepan. Bring to a boil over medium-high heat, then reduce the heat to maintain a simmer and cook for 5 minutes.
2. Using a fork, combine cornstarch and 1/4 cup of the hot cream mixture in a small bowl to make a slurry. Add the slurry to the saucepan and bring back to a boil to thicken. Reduce the heat to maintain a simmer and cook, stirring regularly, for 10 minutes.
3. Stir in American cheese and white cheddar, 1/4 cup at a time, letting each addition melt before adding the next. Add the nutmeg, strain the sauce through a fine-mesh sieve, and season with salt and pepper. (If using as a deep, stop here. Pack the beer cheese in a resealable contained, and reheat on low before serving.)
4. To make the Mac'n'Beer cheese: cook the macaroni 2 minutes shy of the package instructions. Drain and combine with the beer cheese. Pack in a resealable gallon-bag or container, and pack the butter, panko and Monterey Jack in separate small containers. Transport in a cooler filled with ice.
At the campout
5. Prepare a campire. Melt the butter in a cast-iron skillet over low heat. Stir in the panko to coat and set aside. Plop the noodles and beer cheese in a 10-inch cast-iron Dutch over and smooth the top with a spoon, top evenly with layers of buttery panko and shredded cheese, and cover with the lid. Bake at 350 degrees (7 coals below the oven, 14 on the lid) until the top is golden, about 20 minutes. Serve while hot and gooey.