Panko Crumb-Topped Gourmet MACARONI & CHEESE

Table of Contents: Pasta

Normally I am not a big fan of canned cream soups, but then there is the occasion to use it and this is it!  I hope you will agree.

8 oz. elbow macaroni
1 (10 ¾ oz.) can cream of mushroom soup
1 small onion, minced
1 (2-oz.) jar diced pimentos
¼ tsp. salt
1 cup mayonnaise (do not use Miracle Whip)
1 cup sharp Cheddar cheese, grated
¾ cup Panko bread crumbs (Japanese breadcrumbs)

 

 

Cook the macaroni according to package directions.  Do not overcook.  Drain the macaroni and return it to the cooking pot.  Stir in all other ingredients except the Panko crumbs until well blended.  Prepare a 2-quart baking dish with spray oil.  Put the macaroni mixture into the baking dish and evenly sprinkle on the Panko breadcrumbs.  Bake at 400 degrees for about 30 minutes.

This is an excerpt for The National Pasta Association @ ilovepasta.org about early pasta making:

Popular legend has it that Marco Polo introduced pasta to Italy following his exploration of the Far East in the late 13th century; however, we can trace pasta back as far as the fourth century B.C., where an Etruscan tomb showed a group of natives making what appears to be pasta. The Chinese were making a noodle-like food as early as 3000 B.C. And Greek mythology suggests that the Greek God Vulcan invented a device that made strings of dough (the first spaghetti!).

Pasta made its way to the New World through the English, who discovered it while touring Italy. Colonists brought to America the English practice of cooking noodles at least one half hour, then smothering them with cream sauce and cheese. But it was Thomas Jefferson who is credited with bringing the first "maccaroni" machine to America in 1789 when he returned home after serving as ambassador to France.

The first industrial pasta factory in America was built in Brooklyn in 1848 by, of all people, a Frenchman, who spread his spaghetti strands on the roof to dry in the sunshine.

Thanks National Pasta Association for this interesting information about one of America’s favorite foods.

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