Palmetto Macaroni and Cheese
1/2 pound macaroni
6 oz. Palmetto Cheese – Original, Jalapeno or Bacon
2 Tbsp butter or margarine
2 Tbsp all purpose flour
1 cup milk
salt and pepper
Panko Breadcrumbs 8 oz
Oil for frying
Cook macaroni in boiling water for approximately 12 minutes or until pasta is tender. Drain and set aside. In a saucepan, melt butter over medium heat. Stir flour into the melted butter until combined. Cook for 2 minutes, stirring occasionaly. Add milk and stir until flour mixture has dissolved. Continue to stir until the mixture has thickened. Stirring will prevent the milk from scorching on the bottom of the pan. Once thickened, add Palmetto Pimento Cheese and remove from the heat. Stir until combined. Add salt and pepper to taste. In a bowl, combine macaroni and the cheese sauce until mixed thoroughly. Cover with plastic wrap and chill for at least 2 hours or until the Macaroni and Cheese has set and is firm.
A few notes before you begin. Be prepared to get your hands dirty! This is not one of those recipes where your hands stay pristine. It’s best to get everything you need together first. Another quick tip is to make sure your oil is hot enough. If they are taking longer than 10-15 seconds on either side, turn up the heat. We thought our oil was too hot, so turned it down. Well….what happens is that the macaroni wants to return to its gooey state and everything starts to fall apart and becomes quite a mess in the frying pan.
Place the breadcrumbs into a bowl and set aside. Add oil to your frying pan and put on medium – medium high heat. You will also want to set up a tray or plate with paper towels to soak up excess oil. Now that you’ve got everything setup, it’s time to make the bites!
Take a scoop of mac and cheese and form a golf ball sized ball. Roll the ball in the breadcrumbs and pack the ball tightly with your hands, adding more breadcrumbs if needed. When the ball is breaded, repeat this process with the rest of the macaroni and cheese. You should get around 24 balls total.
When the oil has heated, gently place a few of the balls into oil. They fry up quickly, so it’s best to only add what you can handle. As soon as one side is golden brown, flip it over with a pair of tongs or slotted spoon and brown the other side. After both sides have browned, transfer to your tray with paper towels. Complete this process with the rest of the balls.
We served our Palmetto Macaroni and Cheese Bites with melted Palmetto Cheese. Just place the other 6 oz of Palmetto Cheese left in your container (if you’re using a 12 oz tub) into a microwave safe bowl. Cook on high for 45 seconds. Stir and spoon onto a plate. You can also serve with a pepper relish, tomato cream sauce or just by themselves!