You are here: Home » Recipes » Macaroni and Cheese with Zesty Tomatoes Macaroni and Cheese with Zesty Tomatoes Recipe by Relish Contributor Yield 8 servings Start with a creamy béchamel sauce, add cheese and tomatoes, then bake until gloriously browned and bubbly. PrintEmail Ingredients Zesty Tomato Mixture:2 teaspoons olive oil1 small onion, chopped1 jalapeno pepper, seeded and chopped1 medium tomato, cored and chopped2 teaspoons dried oreganoMacaroni and Cheese Sauce:1 pound uncooked pasta such as small shells or penned Salt, to taste Water for cooking pasta1 tablespoon butter, margarine or soy margarine2 tablespoons unbleached all-purpose flour2 1/2 cups 2-percent milk, warmed1 bay leaf2 teaspoons Dijon mustard1 teaspoon hot pepper sauce1 cup shredded sharp low-fat cheddar cheese1/2 cup shredded low-fat monterey jack cheese1/2 cup shredded low-fat mozzarella cheese1/2 cup shredded parmesan or asiago cheese2 slices sourdough or whole-wheat bread or 1 cup Ritz cracker crumbs Instructions To make tomato mixture: Heat oil in a nonreactive skillet over medium-high heat. Add onions, jalapeno, tomato and oregano and cook 2 minutes. Set aside. To make macaroni and sauce: Preheat oven to 375F. Lightly spray a 9-by-13-inch baking dish with nonstick cooking spray. Cook pasta in plenty of boiling salted water 5 to 6 minutes until tender but al dente. Drain and rinse immediately in ice cold water to stop cooking. Place pasta in a nonreactive large mixing bowl. Heat butter in a medium saucepan over medium heat until melted. Add flour and combine well. Cook over low heat, stirring, 2 minutes until a roux or paste is formed. Add warmed milk, bay leaf, mustard and hot sauce; whisk to combine. Bring to a boil, continuing to stir well. Reduce heat to simmer and, stirring constantly, cook 5 minutes. Remove from heat and add cheeses. Stir for 1 minute until cheeses melt and sauce appears creamy and smooth. Pour over cooked pasta and mix well. Stir in tomato mixture. Pour mixture into prepared pan. If using bread slices for topping, process in a blender or a food processor fitted with metal blade until they make crumbs. Sprinkle casserole with bread or cracker crumbs and bake, uncovered, 25 minutes. Want more help? Check out this step-by-step video on making béchamel sauce.