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Homemade Macaroni and Cheese: The Topic


Florida Jim
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There was a previous topic on this subject in which I confessed my use of rather mundale ingredients.

Yep mine is also similar with a few variations. I used Cabot 50% and use smoked paprika.

Never trust a skinny chef

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Previous discussions:

"Cheese and Macaroni, Homemade, gourmet, or Kraft's?"

"Macaroni and cheese, Continued, recipes"

That being said, my niece likes Patti Labelle's "Over the Rainbow Macaroni & Cheese" which is a heart attack waiting to happen that includes 4 kinds of cheese (5, if you count Velveeta :blink: ).

 

“Peter: Oh my god, Brian, there's a message in my Alphabits. It says, 'Oooooo.'

Brian: Peter, those are Cheerios.”

– From Fox TV’s “Family Guy”

 

Tim Oliver

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There was a previous topic on this subject in which I confessed my use of rather mundale ingredients.

Yes! And I made it. And it was fantastic! Now I have lost it. :sad:

Linda LaRose aka "fifi"

"Having spent most of my life searching for truth in the excitement of science, I am now in search of the perfectly seared foie gras without any sweet glop." Linda LaRose

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This is the original post:

I agree with you 100% There are some "convenience" foods that are worth using because they enable you to do other things with more flair.

I often have people ask me for my recipe for Mac 'n Cheese. I unabashadly tell them my "secret".

First I cook the Creamettes brand elbow macaroni, if that is not available then it is Barilla.

It is then cooked aldente, then drained, tossed back in the pot with butter and a can (or two, depending on the amount of macaroni) of Campbell's Condensed Cheddar Cheese Soup, undiluted.

Stir, pour in a casserole, sprinkle the top with parmesan or asiago, freshly grated and run under the broiler for a couple of minutes.

It is alway creamy, never gets gummy or hard and tastes good.

If we want spicy it is the Nacho Soup I use.

In the meantime, I have baked bread from scratch, cooked fresh mushrooms, onions, tomato and squash, grilled chops or steaks and prepared a killer dessert.

The mac and cheese takes 15 minutes, tops.

"There are, it has been said, two types of people in the world. There are those who say: this glass is half full. And then there are those who say: this glass is half empty. The world belongs, however, to those who can look at the glass and say: What's up with this glass? Excuse me? Excuse me? This is my glass? I don't think so. My glass was full! And it was a bigger glass!" Terry Pratchett

 

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I have a friend who makes mac and cheese using the pasta from Easy Mac. But instead of the powdered packet he uses goat cheese and white truffle oil :wacko:

True Heroism is remarkably sober, very undramatic.

It is not the urge to surpass all others at whatever cost,

but the urge to serve others at whatever cost. -Arthur Ashe

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Isn't it easier to just buy pasta in its own box?? Especially given the other ingredients being used which are so delicate ... and expensive .. just a thought ...

Absolutely. That's why the easy mac part is so absurd. I make fun of him for this on a regular basis :biggrin:

True Heroism is remarkably sober, very undramatic.

It is not the urge to surpass all others at whatever cost,

but the urge to serve others at whatever cost. -Arthur Ashe

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There was a previous topic on this subject in which I confessed my use of rather mundale ingredients.

I am the King of eGullet Searches! :laugh:

andiesenji's recipe for mac & cheese (it should take you to the exact post)

 

“Peter: Oh my god, Brian, there's a message in my Alphabits. It says, 'Oooooo.'

Brian: Peter, those are Cheerios.”

– From Fox TV’s “Family Guy”

 

Tim Oliver

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family recipe for baked mac and cheese

1lb box elbow mac,cooked al dente

11/2 cups milk

1 package philly cream cheese

3/4 lb. pack of extra sharp white cheddar

direction--simmer milk and cream cheese till melted pour in buttered 9x9 bakind dish,top entirely with sliced cheddar bake at 350 for 45 mins till cheese is brown on edges**note-great with baked ham :wub:

Enjoy!! Dave s

"Food is our common ground,a universal experience"

James Beard

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I make the John Thorne inspired, Cooks Illustrated stovetop version, except that I use Monterey Jack for its melting qualities and aged Gouda for flavor. If I don't have aged Gouda, I use really really sharp cheddar.

If you don't know this version, it calls for evaporated milk. My best ever incarnation of the dish occurred when I used leftover evaporated milk that I'd stored in a jar that previously contained smoked mustard. The milk took on this ethereal subtle smoky flavor from the jar that imbued the whole dish. (I just found some more of the mustard, so I plan to save the jar and try to recreate it.)

Although I have to say that the cut up, rolled in panko, deep fried leftovers that Alton Brown made on his show have me re-thinking the bechamel/custard baked-in-the-oven style, just so I could do that with the leftovers.

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Well it was a big hit. By the way Pastitsio has a layer of cinnamon flavored meat in the middle.

Bruce Frigard

Quality control Taster, Château D'Eau Winery

"Free time is the engine of ingenuity, creativity and innovation"

111,111,111 x 111,111,111 = 12,345,678,987,654,321

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I'm going to make one of my favorite Mac and Cheese recipes tonight, Greek Pastitio or Pastitsio and was wondering what other's favorite recipes were?

Edit: unsure on spelling

I just made some four cheese pasta this past week.

Fontina, Gorganzola, Pecorino Romano and Parmesan-Reggiano in decending quantity.

Baked for about 15 minutes in the oven to toast the bread crumb topping. YUM!!! :biggrin:

David

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I use a three cheese combination: a bit of 3 year Shelbourne Farms unpasteurized white cheddar, a milder canadian cheddar, and some parm regg. The Shelbourne Farms give the cheese an extra depth of flavor that's really fantastic. I also tend to use rigatoni instead of elbow macaroni, because I think it holds the sauce and cheese better.

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Well so far everyone who's had mine says it's awesome. But it's not mine, it's Martha's! Sharp white cheddar and gruyere, noodles, creamy bechemel sauce. YUM!

Martha's is the best... :wub::wub: ...the ultimate in comfort food. I bake it in a large shallow baking dish & double the breadcrumb topping, so there's plenty of crunch!

Second best is my grandmother's with Velveeta. Served with fried catfish.

I also like the cavatappi noodles instead of elbow... they hold more cheese sauce.

Edited by viva (log)

...wine can of their wits the wise beguile, make the sage frolic, and the serious smile. --Alexander Pope

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I've tried a lot of recipes for mac and cheese trying to find one that's delicious but not ordinary....I think Martha's is excellent! But my very very favorite is one called Macaroni and Cheese with Prosciutto and Taleggio that was in Bon Appetit's How America Eats issue in March of 2002....I'd be happy to send the recipe to anyone who can't find the magazine, since I looked for it over at epicurious and it's not there, unfortunately. I only use half the amount of prosciutto and the cheese, but it's by far the best mac and cheese I"ve ever tasted.

Edited to add: it also used optional truffles and white truffle oil....oh man, I think I'm gonna have to make some this weekend :rolleyes:

Edited by NVNVGirl (log)
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When going for my standard I like to use a combo of Monty Jack and very sharp cheddar, good bit of the sharp on top. Baked until crusty all around. (My mr will fight me for the crust. :wink:) Half and half or evap milk, both are good, red pepper or black.

But my new favorite variation on the theme is an old German/PA Dutch standard -- German Noodle Ring. Swiss cheese with egg noodles. Bechamel sauce, with tons of Swiss melted in, sometimes a little caraway seed, sauce poured over noodles in a ring or bundt pan (I have a ceramic bundt that is killer for this) baked until solid and crusty around the edges. Then the other half of the sauce is ladled over the unmolded ring. Arranged in the center -- (seared, I prefer adds something to dish) asparagus or other green veg like broccoli spears (peas are also suggested in original recipe, but I haven't tried those).

We have been known to get up to eat this in the middle of the night. :blush:

Judith Love

North of the 30th parallel

One woman very courteously approached me in a grocery store, saying, "Excuse me, but I must ask why you've brought your dog into the store." I told her that Grace is a service dog.... "Excuse me, but you told me that your dog is allowed in the store because she's a service dog. Is she Army or Navy?" Terry Thistlewaite

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I'm going to make one of my favorite Mac and Cheese recipes tonight, Greek Pastitio or Pastitsio and was wondering what other's favorite recipes were?

Edit: unsure on spelling

I just made pastitsio last week and used my favorite recipe (halved) by James Beard, from his book Beard on Pasta. Well, it's the only recipe for this dish I've ever used, because it's so good I've found no reason to stray.

For American Mac and Cheese, I like the microwave version from Barbara Kafka's Microwave Gourmet. The sauce is ready before the pasta (Barilla elbows, with the ridges) is cooked. It's homemade, easy and so good.

My 12-year-old daughter loves both these dishes.

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Made a great :wub: Mac & Cheese and with the bonus of leftovers. I reheated for lunch and encountered the usual unsatisfactory result, which I'd forgotten. I've tried this several ways:

- microwave

- Cuisinart Convection Toaster Oven

- Standard oven

The sauce "splits" and it becomes an oily mess. :angry: I've added a little milk/cream, tossed it around a little, but somehow - the result is always a little disappointing - a shadow of it's former glorious self. :sad:

Does anyone experience this? What is the best way to enjoy Mac & Cheese, Second Time Around...?

Rover

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I had a boyfriend that once requested Mac&Cheese about once a week. Since I got tired of making it all the time, I would make the first batch really really thick and I wouldn't add all the leftover sauce to the pasta. I would freeze what sauce was left over right away. When it came time to make it again, I would place it in a pot and reheat very slowly. If it started to break I would add more milk and whisk furiously. This usually worked and took less time than making it all over again. For leftover's that were pre-mixed, I would actually heat it up in the oven until dry and crispy. Best advice, store separately :biggrin:

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I think the problem of the split/oilyness has to do with the fact that cheddar really doesn't suit itself to melting and as the primary cheese component, it needs to be incorporated with some other kind of cheese, like colby or monterey jack. I think also you need to have a considerable amount of bechemel to make a Mac and Cheese that suits itself to reheating.

Jason Perlow

Co-Founder, The Society for Culinary Arts & Letters

offthebroiler.com - Food Blog | View my food photos on Instagram

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I think the problem of the split/oilyness has to do with the fact that cheddar really doesn't suit itself to melting and as the primary cheese component, it needs to be incorporated with some other kind of cheese, like colby or monterey jack. I think also you need to have a considerable amount of bechemel to make a Mac and Cheese that suits itself to reheating.

Jason, the cheeses in my recipe are 2 cups Cheddar, 1 cup Mozzarella, 1 cup Parmesan - however, I hear you on the amount of the béchamel. I use penne in this recipe and it does plump up pretty significantly so the ratio to the sauce might be a clue.

Thanks! :rolleyes:

Rover

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