Mac and cheese is always a winner with the kids, but the addition of roasted tomatoes will delight grown-ups too. Seemingly self-indulgent and time-intensive, this luxuriously cheesy (but quick and easy) twist on traditional mac and cheese is actually just 411 calories. For the smoothest, creamiest results, let the white sauce cool slightly before whisking in the shredded cheese. You may be able to find pre-shredded cheeses, but shred it yourself to ensure you have the highest quality cheese—it will melt into the sauce much better. We don’t skimp on these cheeses in this dish, using four deliciously decadent cheeses to give that something extra. A little oregano and dry mustard lend this mac and cheese a little extra seasoning too.
8 ounces uncooked elbow macaroni
4 plum tomatoes (about 1 lb.), cut into 1/4-inch-thick slices
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 teaspoon chopped fresh oregano
1/4 teaspoon black pepper
1 1/4 teaspoons kosher salt, divided
1 tablespoon unsalted butter
2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon dry mustard
1 1/2 cups 2% reduced-fat milk
4 ounces Monterey Jack cheese, shredded (about 1 cup)
Cook pasta according to package directions. Drain and set aside.
Preheat oven to 450°F. Place tomato slices on a wire rack on a baking sheet. Brush on oil, and sprinkle with oregano, pepper, and 1/4 teaspoon of the salt. Bake in preheated oven until slightly charred, about 18 to 20 minutes.
Meanwhile, melt butter in a medium saucepan over medium until melted, about 1 minute. Whisk in flour, and cook, whisking constantly, until the mixture takes on a slightly nutty color and smell, about 2 to 3 minutes. Whisk in dry mustard. Slowly whisk in milk, whisking constantly, and continue to cook until slightly thickened, about 4 to 5 minutes. Remove from heat, and cool slightly, about 3 minutes. Slowly whisk in Monterey Jack, Cheddar, fontina, and remaining 1 teaspoon salt; whisk constantly to combine and melt cheeses, about 2 minutes. Stir in pasta.
Spoon pasta mixture into a lightly greased 11- x 7-inch (2-quart) baking dish, and top with tomato slices. Sprinkle with Parmesan cheese. Bake at 450°F until bubbly and tomatoes are charred and aromatic, about 10 minutes. Serve immediately.