It’s Not a Too-mah….It’s Mac and Cheese

Some movies reach iconic stature in your mind just because of a single line from the movie. In some cases, the movie is decent. In others, not so much. But unfortunately, in your mind they all become great over the long period of time where you quote the line but don’t watch the movie.

Over a recent holiday weekend, my cable company opened up all of the movie channels for four days for free. Even though I feel I pay my monthly bill with pints of my own blood, I don’t subscribe to any of the premium channels, so this was a welcome  change. I scanned the guide listing and identified forty movies that I wanted to record on my DVR. Sacrificing quality (normal definition versus high-definition) for quantity, I recorded them all.

Some of the movies were recently out in the theaters, but many of them were old; well, old enough that I saw them long ago. After they were recorded, I told my boys about them and how great they were. One by one my boys watched them (often times when I was at work or in bed) only to report they were “OK” or even “really dumb, Dad”.

One such movie that I encouraged them to watch was Kindergarten Cop. I remembered the basic premise of the movie, but what I remembered most of all was the scene where Arnold (playing a kindergarten teacher) told his class he had a headache. One boy pipes up, “Maybe it’s a tumor” and in the voice that only Ah-nold could use, “It’s not a too-mah!” I must have quoted that line several hundred times over the years.

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This dish is different than any mac and cheese I’ve had and ya know what? It works really well. A nice fruit flavor and oozing with cheese.

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For the life of me, I could not find chicken apple sausage. I did find a chicken Italian sausage so I went with that.

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Cooking the pasta.

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I sliced up the sausage into “coins” and fried them up with the onions.

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Making the sauce.

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After adding copious amounts of cheese.

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Ready for the oven.

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Doesn’t that look awesome?

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A fruity, pleasant tasting dish. One son raved about it. You might be able to dice up an apple to throw in as well.

Apple-Sausage Mac and Cheese

Prep Time: 0 hours 15 minutes | Cook Time: 0 hours 50 minutes | Makes: 6 servings | Difficulty: Easy


  • 4 tablespoons unsalted butter, plus more for the dish
  • Kosher salt
  • 3/4 pound medium pasta shells
  • 1/2 cup diced onion
  • 6 ounces chicken-apple sausage, sliced 1/2 inch thick
  • 1 tablespoon mustard powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 1/4 cup all-purpose flour
  • 3 cups apple juice
  • 1 pound Monterey jack cheese, shredded (4 cups)
  • 1/2 pound extra-sharp cheddar cheese, shredded (2 cups)
  • 1/2 cup sour cream
  • 35 small butter crackers (1 sleeve Ritz), crushed


Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Butter a 2 1/2 -quart baking dish. Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil; add the pasta and cook until al dente, about 6 minutes. Drain and set aside.

Meanwhile, melt the butter in a large saucepan over medium-high heat. Add the onion and cook until soft, about 3 minutes. Add the sausage, mustard powder, cayenne and 1 teaspoon salt and cook, stirring, until the sausage is golden, about 3 minutes. Stir in the flour and cook, stirring, until lightly toasted, about 2 minutes. Stir in the apple juice and cook, stirring occasionally, until thickened slightly, about 8 more minutes.

Slowly stir about three-quarters each of the Monterey jack and cheddar cheese into the sauce until smooth, about 2 minutes. Remove from the heat. Stir in the pasta and sour cream. Pour the mixture into the prepared baking dish. Sprinkle with the crushed crackers and the remaining cheese. Bake until bubbly, 25 to 30 minutes. Let rest 10 minutes before serving.


Tags: , , , , , , , , , , ,

Categories: Cheese2, Chicken, Lunch2, Pasta

Author:The Ranting Chef

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6 Comments on “It’s Not a Too-mah….It’s Mac and Cheese”

  1. June 23, 2013 at 11:20 am #

    This looks pretty awesome! Applegate Farms makes a pretty mean organic chicken and apple sausage, and so does Aidell’s!


  2. Sinfully Tempting
    June 23, 2013 at 1:10 pm #

    Looks good!!! Oh, and I have a bad habit of baiting my husband. I’ll say things (at least once-twice a month) like “I think it’s a tumor!” just so I can hear him reply “It’s not a too-mah!” hahaha. Good to know we’re not the only ones trying to push our son into watching (what he refers to) as “old” movies!


  3. June 23, 2013 at 6:06 pm #

    Yum! Looks great! I love that line from the movie. And don’t feel bad, my twelve year old daughter does that to me all the time – watches an old movie I thought was just great, and she’ll say it was dumb. I must say though, many times she does like my movies and will even come to me once in awhile asking for a suggestion of one of “my movies”. 😉


  4. June 25, 2013 at 2:02 pm #

    Aw, “Kindergarten Cop” was a great movie! Even though my kids are all grown, they still make fun of my choice of old movies. I showed my daughter “Footloose” one time and she loved it! You just never know what kids are going to like when it comes to stuff we like, lol!


  5. October 8, 2013 at 8:23 am #

    Wow, so many recipes! I’m always looking for something new to try or spice up an old favorite with. BTW, thanks for liking my first post!



  1. It’s Not a Too-mah….It’s Mac and Cheese | homethoughtsfromabroad626 - July 1, 2013

    […] It’s Not a Too-mah….It’s Mac and Cheese. […]


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