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Macaroni Cheese

Discussion in 'Cookery' started by angiebabe, Mar 16, 2012.

  1. angiebabe

    angiebabe Occasional commenter

    My sister-in-law makes a really good macaroni cheese. I've tried to make it once and failed - and have not tried since (which is something I tend to do, fail and not try again!).
    I know I could look up a recipe but I was wondering how you amazing people make yours?
  2. Don't use Jamie Oliver's recipe (sorry, Jamie, but it is just not yummy)

    This is how I do mine:

    Warm up 700 ml of milk (I usually use a whole litre) with a peeled and halved onion, a peeled clove of garlic or two and one bay leaf. Just until the milk is almost boiling, then remove from heat, leave to infuse for about 10 mins and then remove the onion, garlic and bay leaf.

    Cook the macaroni (I use my eye, but you will need about 14 oz) until almost al dente.

    Use the milk to make a roux - I add some mustard powder. Thicken the roux sauce until it dribbles like thick cream or pancake batter.

    Remove from the heat and adds lots of cheese (I use a mix of gouda and Old Amsterdam, as I can rarely get cheddar), stir until melted.

    Whilst you are doing that, fry up some lardons or chopped bacon

    Tip the lardons and sauce onto the cooked macaroni and mix well. Sometimes I add some petit pois, but that is just to get some veg in for the kids. Put into a buttered casserole dish. Sprinkle breadcrumbs and parmesan over the top, but make sure the parmesan is well mixed with the breadcrumbs and add a couple of knobs of butter on top to stop the parmesan burning

    Cook in a preheated oven at 190° for about 20 mins until the top is starting to brown and bubbles.
  3. I throw a large lump of butter into a pan and gently sweat thinly sliced leeks until soft. Add flour and milk ( if I have stock to hand, I sometimes do half and half) to make the sauce, adding cheese of choice. I also put in leftover ham if available and season to taste.
    Mix the sauce into cooked pasta and put into ovenproof dish. It must have sliced tomatoes on top for me, then more cheese and breadcrumbs. Cook until brown and bubbly as CQ says.
    Sorry, I have no idea of weights and measurements. I have been making this for so many years, it is all by sight.
    I am most definitely having macaroni cheese tonight! [​IMG]
  4. Tee hee - so am I!
  5. egyptgirl

    egyptgirl Senior commenter

  6. inky

    inky Lead commenter

    I read a stupid article recently in which it was claimed that macaroni cheese [or mac'n cheese, as we're supposed to call it now] is a recent American import. Rubbish! It was a basic in the 1950s-60s household of my childhood.
    The only way I can get mr inky to eat it is by frying chopped up onion, sweet-cured bacon and green pepper and adding them to the mix before browning in the oven.

    The most important thing is to use good mature cheddar. You'll need less of it and it'll taste nicer.
  7. egyptgirl

    egyptgirl Senior commenter

  8. angiebabe

    angiebabe Occasional commenter

    What stars you all are.
    Will definitely be trying this tonight with a homemade olive ciabbatta!! Don't be offtended if I mix the recipes [​IMG]
  9. Noooooooooooooooooooo, that is the whole point. Then you end up with your very own, special, definitive angiebabe recipe :eek:)
  10. angiebabe

    angiebabe Occasional commenter

  11. angiebabe

    angiebabe Occasional commenter

    I fried the leek, lardons and some mushrooms together. I made a cheese sauce from scratch (something new for me - I'm not as advanced as some of you cookery stars). Used mature cheddar and a pecorino type cheese and it was absolutely gorgeous. Oh and I added a little English Mustard to the cheese sauce and some garlic to the leeks etc.
    Thank you all so much.
  12. Awesome! This is my dinner tonight then! Am feeling very tired and fancy comfort food but my normal macaroni cheese was just a cheese sauce and macaroni...boring compared to these versions, it will be nice to do something a bit different with it [​IMG]
    Although I am supposed to be dieting...surely macaroni cheese isn't the best thing for that?
  13. lapinrose

    lapinrose Star commenter

    Hmmmm, low fat cheese, well use strong cheese then you use less to get the taste, omit the butter/margarine in making the white sauce, I just whisk the flour into cold milk and bring to the boil whisking all the time, use wholemeal pasta, add chopped, blanched leeks and you will end up with a reduced fat version, so fewer calories.
  14. Aw thank you loads for that! I'm going to go to the supermarket now and give it a go!
  15. Oh how we laughed when we found out that some people ate macaroni cheese that came in a tin.
  16. Reading all of this inspired me to cook (and in fact eat) macaroni cheese for the first time! Did a combination of the things you suggested, which resulted in a lovely dinner last night.
    And as I made far too much, there is also the added bonus of me eating the reheated leftovers for my lunch right now!
  17. angiebabe

    angiebabe Occasional commenter

    Well done Rubygirl. Unfortunately my second attempt did not taste as yummy as the first!

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