Lightly toasted sunflower seed kernels give this macaroni and cheese recipe a delicious crunch. Sautéed onions and mushrooms are complimented by the rich cheddar cheese.
Recipe makes 6 To 8 servings.
- 16 ounces uncooked macaroni
- 1/2 cup raw sunflower seed kernels (Shelled salted sunflower seeds add a saltier crunch to this recipe)
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 3 tablespoons butter
- 1 small chopped onion
- 1 cup sliced mushrooms
- 4 cups grated cheddar cheese
- 1 teaspoon nutmeg
- 1 teaspoon paprika
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- Coarse ground black pepper to taste
- 3 cups dry bread crumbs
- 2 tablespoons butter — melted
- 1/2 chopped red bell pepper sliced into thin rings
- Heat the oven to 350F.
- Toast sunflower seeds in oil in a skillet until golden and season with a sprinkle of salt.
- Boil macaroni in lightly salted water for 6 to 7 minutes. Macaroni should still be firm.
- In the same pan used to toast the sunflower seeds, sauté the onions in the butter until light golden in color.
- Add mushrooms and sauté for another 4 minutes.
- Stir all ingredients together well and spoon into a greased baking dish. Bake for 20 minutes and cover with breadcrumbs and paprika.
- Bake another 10 minutes and garnish with raw red bell pepper rings