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Best Macaroni and Cheese Recipes

c
chabrab Mar 6, 2013 09:24 AM

Anything goes here, not looking for a specific method or style. I plan to make several and pick my favorite from the bunch.

  1. PinchOfSalt Mar 6, 2013 09:47 AM

    I am a mac and cheese purist. No eggs or condensed milk or chicken broth in mine! I also stick with cheddar and cheddar-like cheeses and skip the recipes that stray into gruyere or some form of blue cheese or mozzarella. Like I said, I am a purist in this case. So over the years I have tried recipes that are generally simply macaroni and some form of cheddar-based sauce mornay, which is a cheese sauce made starting with a bechamel (flour, butter, milk). For years I had a recipe that came off a box of macaroni. It added some minced onion, dry mustard, and cayenne to the sauce. These days my current fave is the baked macaroni and cheese recipe in Cover and Bake (from Cook's Illustrated). It calls for chicken broth, but I just substitute more milk instead. Making the entire recipe with 2 percent milk instead of whole milk and the chicken broth works very well too.

    2 Replies
    1. re: PinchOfSalt
      c
      chabrab Mar 6, 2013 09:54 AM

      Excellent, thank you kindly. I will add it to my list to try!

      1. re: chabrab
        PinchOfSalt Mar 6, 2013 01:02 PM

        Here is a link to an online version of the recipe. Sometimes I do the crumbs, sometimes not. I definitely up the sharpness of the cheddar-like cheese compared to what the recipe says. And I have skipped the garlic and been entirely pleased. Enjoy!

        http://culinarycravings.net/2011/08/1...

    2. j
      jbsiegel Mar 6, 2013 11:16 AM

      Another purist here! We swear by this one: http://www.goodeatsoftexas.com/macaroni_and_cheese.html

      You could jazz it up a little with breadcrumbs on top, but we like it just "as is".

      I did see a pretty darned good-looking recipe for crab macaroni and cheese (http://www.betterrecipes.com/blogs/da...), but the family wouldn't go for all those types of cheese. I've been planning to try it but change the cheese.

      Also, I love to use Cellentani pasta (our fav). I know it doesn't have the hole in the middle like elbow for the cheese, but it's curly and ridged enough to grab onto the sauce.

      1. Njchicaa Mar 6, 2013 11:39 AM

        http://www.foodnetwork.com/recipes/pa...

        This is a huge hit with friends and family. If you can get past who wrote the recipe, it's actually very good. (I don't use the eggs)

        8 Replies
        1. re: Njchicaa
          juliejulez Mar 6, 2013 12:09 PM

          Mac and Cheese is one dish I trust Paula Deen to do well :)

          1. re: juliejulez
            Njchicaa Mar 7, 2013 11:30 AM

            Everyone and I mean everyone who has had it loves it and asks for the recipe. I add a bit of Emeril's Essence seasoning to it for an extra bit of flavor. It's very good and that is coming from someone who is not a PD fan

            1. re: Njchicaa
              512window Mar 7, 2013 03:20 PM

              I don't have a slow cooker - doesn't cooked macaroni, cooked for an additional 3 hours turn into mush?

              1. re: 512window
                Njchicaa Mar 7, 2013 06:23 PM

                I didn't even know there was a slow cooker version! The recipe I use has it going into the oven for 45 min or so until everything is hot and bubbly!

                1. re: 512window
                  Njchicaa Mar 7, 2013 06:31 PM

                  The recipe I've been using all these years wasn't for a slow cooker. I mix everything together and bake until hot and bubbling. That's what the recipe said to do!

                  I'll pull out my copy of the instructions tomorrow...

                  1. re: Njchicaa
                    512window Mar 8, 2013 11:46 AM

                    The one online says: Set the slow cooker on low setting and cook for 3 hours, stirring occasionally.

                    Maybe it's like her recipe for English Peas.

                    Your way makes much more sense to me! Never change if it works.

            2. re: Njchicaa
              s
              sandylc Mar 7, 2013 12:04 PM

              Campbell's Cheddar Cheese Soup???????

              1. re: sandylc
                Njchicaa Mar 7, 2013 06:32 PM

                YES and you'd never know! I'm a big snob about canned soups and such but I can't complain about it here.

            3. s
              sandylc Mar 6, 2013 11:51 AM

              Extra-sharp cheddar is the main cheese in mine, but I enhance it with a creamy monterey jack and a nutty parmesan.

              Butter and parmesan breadcrumbs on top are great - grinding your own from a good baguette or italian loaf is the best.

              A bechamel-based sauce enhanced by dry mustard, nutmeg, and cayenne is the best. Eggs based upon personal preference.

              1 Reply
              1. re: sandylc
                PinchOfSalt Mar 6, 2013 12:59 PM

                I am with you on the cheddar. For me it needs to be at least "sharp". Medium cheddar makes dull mac and cheese - at least as far as I am concerned.

              2. juliejulez Mar 6, 2013 12:09 PM

                I like Ina Garten's: http://www.foodnetwork.com/recipes/in...

                1. goodhealthgourmet Mar 6, 2013 12:45 PM

                  I'll take a smoky baked mac & cheese above all others:
                  - Smoked gouda, sharp white cheddar & fontina
                  - Smoked paprika instead of nutmeg
                  - Chipotle (powder or pureed chiles) instead of cayenne
                  - 1 tsp. dry mustard in the sauce
                  - Bacon optional

                  2 Replies
                  1. re: goodhealthgourmet
                    Cherylptw Mar 6, 2013 03:08 PM

                    Yes to all...smoked gouda mac & cheese is so so good! Enhancing it with chiles & bacon is guilding the lily

                    1. re: goodhealthgourmet
                      goodhealthgourmet Mar 7, 2013 09:16 AM

                      I forgot to mention, I prefer shells over elbows because they hold the sauce better and they're easier to spear with a fork.

                    2. dordalina Mar 6, 2013 01:07 PM

                      I like my mac and cheese pretty simple, like I remember it as a kid. I still revert to my tattered Betty Crocker cookbook for the most basic recipe...classic bechamel sauce with a bit of dry mustard added to the sauce. Add in a mix of cheddar, parmesan (not too much, just to add that parm-saltiness), and...cringe...american cheese slices. Not the peel the cellophane off kind, but the kind you get at the deli counter. Mix it with elbow macaroni and bake until browned on top. Always my go-to.

                      1 Reply
                      1. re: dordalina
                        coll Mar 14, 2013 07:36 AM

                        Simple is the way to go!

                      2. biggreenmatt Mar 6, 2013 02:53 PM

                        I'll preach the non-traditional gospel when it comes to mac and cheese whenever and wherever I can.

                        To wit:

                        I grew up on boxed mac & cheese. Years ago, I tried a mac and cheese with a proper mornay/cheddar sauce. It ruined me for the boxed stuff.

                        December last, I started playing around with modernist cooking and whipped up a batch of modernist mac & cheese (cheese & blessed, blessed sodium citrate). The modernist version has ruined me on the classical versions.

                        Be warned: http://modernistcuisine.com/recipes/s....

                        4 Replies
                        1. re: biggreenmatt
                          biondanonima Mar 7, 2013 11:58 AM

                          I love both "Kraft dinner" and traditional mornay sauce mac and cheese, but I think of them as different foods. However, I just bought some sodium citrate and I can't wait to try modernist cuisine's version. I feel mac and cheese in my future for this weekend...

                          1. re: biggreenmatt
                            j
                            Jimisi Mar 11, 2013 10:25 AM

                            Thanks Matt, I really want to try this. Does it turn out like frozen varieties?

                            Trying several recipes sounds like fun. Thanks to the OP for a great idea. I found a recipe that layers pasta with sharp cheddar, s & p and tomato juice then bake. Surprisingly good.

                            1. re: Jimisi
                              biggreenmatt Mar 14, 2013 07:15 AM

                              Frozen varieties? You mean like you'd get out of a freezer section at the grocery?

                              Nope.

                              In a nutshell the difference is this:

                              With traditional mac & cheese, you're making a classical sauce, based on a roux, with cheese. Classical sauces are lovely, intelligent and savoury, without any hint of snobbery. A good sauce is a beautiful thing.

                              With modernist mac & cheese, you're not making a sauce at all- you're using a kitchen chemical to make molten cheese, pretty much the same consistency as Velveeta (and I love me my Velveeta)! Imagine a molten smoked gouda, or gooey brie, or Stilton or 10 yr Cheddar or aged Parm or anything, luxuriously draped over pasta, without being diluted with a roux?

                              Yup. Me too.

                              Find thee thy sodium citrate and a micro scale!

                              1. re: biggreenmatt
                                j
                                Jimisi Mar 15, 2013 12:04 AM

                                Thanks and printed and planned. Yay for low tech kitchen chemicals. I love experiments.

                          2. Will Owen Mar 6, 2013 06:06 PM

                            We like every kind I've made, from the School Cafeteria variety in the Sterns' "Square Meals" (not sauced, but made exactly like the straight-noodle Kraft stuff only with butter and real cheese) to the creamiest too-much-cheese-sauce kind. The consistent favorite uses a bit over two cups of sauce to 12 oz. of dry macaroni, cooked and drained, plus the addition of ripe Roma tomatoes, de-pulped and then either sliced on top or chunked and stirred in. The cheese is most often a combo of extra-sharp cheddar and either a pecorino or Iberico, and our favorite topping is a mixture of buttered crumbs and Parmesan. I do like to use evaporated milk, partly because it comes in 12-oz cans, and that plus 1.5 Tbs each of butter and flour gives me exactly the right amount of bechamel. The cheese seems to melt into it more smoothly than when it's made with 2%, or that could just be my imagination …

                            1. s
                              SarahInMinneapolis Mar 6, 2013 07:04 PM

                              We had the Ina v. Martha contest a month ago, using the same cheeses, a good Gruyere and Vermont Cheddar. Martha won. [I did not make the topping for either dish.]

                              3 Replies
                              1. re: SarahInMinneapolis
                                d
                                debbiel Mar 10, 2013 06:40 PM

                                The Martha recipe is my favorite (never tried the Ina, though). I use the gruyere (she gives gruyere or pecorino romano option). Martha's is definitely my go to recipe.

                                http://www.marthastewart.com/957243/m...

                                1. re: debbiel
                                  p
                                  Pwmfan Mar 11, 2013 05:34 PM

                                  Made this one year for a family gathering. SIL demurred, saying she did not care for mac and cheese. Someone (not me) insisted she try some. She then polished off a good quarter of the pan (and this makes a BIG pan). Turns out she had never tasted mac and cheese that hadn't come out of the blue box.

                                  I grew up on stovetop mac and cheese: boiled and drained elbows with American cheese and a splash of milk stirred in. No crumbs.

                                  I like them both; they are two different animals.

                                2. re: SarahInMinneapolis
                                  DonShirer Jul 21, 2013 04:10 AM

                                  I just tried a variation on Martha's recipe. Had to fill in some Colby when I ran out of Cheddar, and threw in a chopped jalepeno (first pepper of the season I couldn't resist picking). So far this is my favorite baked M&C version--even DW, not a mac&cheese enthusiast, thought it was good.

                                  Made a half-recipe, but still enough to serve 6+ people.

                                3. jmcarthur8 Mar 6, 2013 07:05 PM

                                  I am a real traditionalist..no eggs or tomatoes. Always sharp cheddar in a white sauce. Lately I have tried some hard gruyere, too, and liked the little tanginess it added.

                                  1. l
                                    LP808 Mar 6, 2013 08:27 PM

                                    Love my mom's grown up baked Mac n cheese. Bechamel/Mornay/whatever is technically correct (with dry mustard, paprika, dash of nutmeg) with sharp and mild cheddar, muenster, Colby, and....... VELVEETA. Layered halfway with bacon, onion, tomatoes. Repeat on top with shredded cheese.

                                    There is just something about velveeta that makes the mac'n'cheese for me. I don't know if it's the creaminess or fond food memory (or both).

                                    4 Replies
                                    1. re: LP808
                                      c
                                      chabrab Mar 7, 2013 07:11 AM

                                      Thank you everyone for your input, i appreciate it!

                                      1. re: LP808
                                        biondanonima Mar 7, 2013 12:00 PM

                                        I use a small amount of Velveeta in my traditional, mornay sauce mac and cheese as well. It helps keep the sauce extra smooth due to its chemical additives. :)

                                        1. re: biondanonima
                                          Berheenia Mar 8, 2013 07:43 AM

                                          I wanted to make a gluten free mac and cheese for a pot luck so I along with the GF pasta I used mostly velveeta in the cheese sauce because I couldn't make a roux with flour to thicken it.
                                          It was devoured.

                                          1. re: Berheenia
                                            Jay F Mar 8, 2013 08:03 AM

                                            That's how my mother made M&C, Berheenia, w/Velveeta.

                                      2. Berheenia Mar 7, 2013 07:46 AM

                                        Another purist here but I have changed up the macaroni. I now use a larger size called casserole elbows. Made by the famous Prince Spaghetti company.

                                        1. r
                                          rouxqueen Mar 7, 2013 11:59 AM

                                          Yes, there are other styles of mac and cheese, but my two sons will argue that this is the best mac and cheese recipe on the planet. I consider this a classic homemade recipe, but I won't rebuff any mac and cheese.

                                          Creamy Macaroni & Cheese
                                          Southern Living

                                          1/2 c butter
                                          1/2 c all-purpose flour
                                          1/2 tsp. salt
                                          1/2 tsp. ground black pepper
                                          1/4 tsp. ground red pepper
                                          1/4 tsp. granulated garlic
                                          2 c half-and-half
                                          2 c milk
                                          4 c shredded sharp Cabot Cheddar, divided
                                          2 c shredded extra-sharp Cabot Cheddar
                                          1 (16-ounce) package macaroni, cooked

                                          Melt butter in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Gradually whisk in flour until smooth; cook, whisking constantly, 2 minutes. Stir in salt and next 3 ingredients. Gradually whisk in half-and-half and milk, cook whisking constantly, 8 to 10 minutes or until thickened. Stir in 2 c sharp Cheddar. Stir in extra-sharp Cheddar until smooth. Remove from heat. Combine pasta and cheese mixture, and pour into a lightly greased 13 x 9 inch baking dish. Sprinkle with remaining sharp Cheddar cheese. Bake at 350 to 20 minutes (bake 15 minutes longer for a crusty top).

                                          1. c
                                            cheesecake17 Mar 7, 2013 01:02 PM

                                            I use a ny times recipe that someone once posted.

                                            Noodles go in a baking dish, uncooked, with milk, cottage cheese, cheddar, dry mustard, Dijon, red pepper flakes.

                                            1. Jay F Mar 7, 2013 01:17 PM

                                              I make mine alla Martha: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iwnDs6...

                                              For pasta, I use cavatappi (squiggly tube shape) rather than macaroni. And I use Parmigiano-Reggiano in addition to cheddar and gruyere.

                                              1 Reply
                                              1. re: Jay F
                                                juliejulez Mar 8, 2013 09:37 AM

                                                I prefer cavatappi also. A bar & grill type place near my office serves a really great mac n cheese with cavatappi, and on the rare occasion that I make it at home these days, I use cavatappi.

                                              2. grampart Mar 7, 2013 01:32 PM

                                                When this subject comes up, my answer is always the same. "Patti LaBelle's Over the Rainbow Mac & Cheese". For family and friends, never hear a discouraging word. I do prefer to substitute Butter Kase for the Muenster, however. YMMV

                                                http://www.food.com/recipe/patti-labe...

                                                1 Reply
                                                1. re: grampart
                                                  fldhkybnva Mar 7, 2013 06:20 PM

                                                  I didn't have luck with this one but I think that's perhaps that it was baked on the bottom of the oven since the rest of the oven was full and it became very dry. I am from a family of baked mac and cheese-ers and my grandmother's famed recipe looks similar to this one so it should have been "over the rainbow." I am determined to give it another try and this time to not turn it into a brick. Thus, it didn't work out for me but I've heard such rave reviews that I'd recommend it.

                                                2. Bada Bing Mar 7, 2013 02:08 PM

                                                  I don't think I've ever met anyone outside my family that makes Mac & Cheese as we do. One step has a long history of grossing people out, but that's for later here.

                                                  The oddity? We make no kind of bechamel or cheese sauce, instead applying successive layers of cooked, rinsed pasta, grated extra-sharp cheddar with salt and pepper, then more pasta, then more cheese, and so on. Like lasagna. Then we pour heated (not scalded) milk over the top until the fluid goes about half way up the vessel. Bake at 350 or so till browned on top and bubbly.

                                                  The result is something very different from the "rich" and "creamy" style of mac and cheese. There is a great texture difference between the relatively drier top and the creamier bottom. Also, the flavor is simple and not in-your-face. Which is why, with this kind of Mac & Cheese, we in our family put ketchup on it at the table. I know that's something done by a small subset of M&C fans. I tend not to put ketchup on the rich creamy styles that most people produce. Too much going on.

                                                  I've tried countless approaches to Mac & Cheese, because I do like to experiment. Sauces, nutmeg, mustard powders, cream cheese, sour cream, you name it. I always come back to my child comfort-food form.

                                                  Also, I think many paste shapes work well here beyond elbows: cappalletti, cavatappi (like Jay F in this thread), gemele, all forms of penne and ziti, and fusilli all work well in this dish.

                                                  p.s., I have a separate thread years ago about who puts ketchup on Mac & Cheese, so best to redirect rage there, maybe?

                                                  http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/703968

                                                  5 Replies
                                                  1. re: Bada Bing
                                                    c
                                                    cheesecake17 Mar 7, 2013 05:30 PM

                                                    This is similar to the recipe i use, but I don't cook the noodles.

                                                    How does your recipe work with leftover pasta?

                                                    1. re: cheesecake17
                                                      Bada Bing Mar 7, 2013 06:05 PM

                                                      Haven't tried it with leftover pasta. But presumably, with a bit of added milk, it would work the same assembled a day or two later.

                                                      I haven't tried using uncooked noodles from the get go. I really should, but I think the vessel would have to be tightly sealed for the upper level pasta to cook, no? Whewre is it getting it's moisture.

                                                      Interestingly, I've experimented with not rinsing and at least mostly cooling the cooked pasta in a colander, and when I do that, the texture is gummy. I think that starches adhere to the cooked pasta and change the effect if you don't rinse it of.

                                                      1. re: Bada Bing
                                                        c
                                                        cheesecake17 Mar 8, 2013 07:13 AM

                                                        We always have cooked pasta in the fridge (toddler in the house). Thinking it might be good for a quick lunch or dinner when all she wants is noodles. I'll try and let you know.

                                                        Here's how I make Mac n cheese with uncooked past-
                                                        1 lb pasta (raw)
                                                        1 16 oz container cottage cheese
                                                        2-3 c milk
                                                        1 lb grated cheddar

                                                        In a large bowl, mix cottage cheese, milk, Dijon mustard, red pepper, salt and pepper. Add in the cheese and pasta, mix well.
                                                        Pour into greased baking dish.
                                                        Bake tightly covered for 30 minutes, stir, cover again and bake for 15 minutes. Uncover, sprinkle with panko and bake till bubbly and most of the milk is absorbed.

                                                        So yeah, it has to be tightly covered, but foil does the trick.
                                                        Iirc, the orig recipe involved several bowls and a blender. No one has ever guessed that there's cottage cheese in the mix. And I use 1% milk, lowfat cheddar, and fat free cottage cheese

                                                        1. re: cheesecake17
                                                          Bada Bing Mar 8, 2013 06:52 PM

                                                          I'll give this a try. Do you use elbows, small or large? Does pasta size/shape matter much?

                                                          1. re: Bada Bing
                                                            c
                                                            cheesecake17 Mar 11, 2013 06:09 PM

                                                            I usually use shells or bowties. Sometimes gemelli. Bowties stick out of the pan and get crispy.

                                                            Elbows work, just don't care for them

                                                  2. aching Mar 7, 2013 04:11 PM

                                                    I like this recipe from Epicurious:

                                                    http://www.epicurious.com/recipes/foo...

                                                    1. tim irvine Mar 7, 2013 05:07 PM

                                                      Made it last night as follows: about a pint of Bechamel made with half and half and seasoned with a good splash of Sriracha. Folded in about 10 ounces of cheddar. Stirred it with the Mac and topped with more cheddar plus some gruyere. Sprinkled with Panko. Baked until bubbly. Broiled until brown. Simple but yummy.

                                                      1. b
                                                        Babyducks Mar 8, 2013 07:20 AM

                                                        My favorite Mac and cheese recipe from Fannie Farmer cookbook. Perfect never fail creamy delight.

                                                        1. e
                                                          Erika L Mar 8, 2013 09:13 AM

                                                          My baked mac and cheese is more about technique than ingredients. Mine doesn't have an oil slick on top and when you take a scoop, it still has strings attached to the mother dish.

                                                          First, I use something like penne or rigatoni. Elbows don't hold up well after 45 min or an hour in the oven. Cook them a couple of minutes shy of al dente, drain and fold into a medium bechamel made with whole milk (this is not the time to go all Pritikin). I use a pound of pasta and a quart of milk and add a good half-dozen shakes of Tabasco. This doesn't add spice, it amps up the cheese flavor.

                                                          I then grate up a 50-50 mixture (give or take) of Cheddar (medium or sharp) and Monterey Jack. I try for 3/4 - 1 lb total. Then I layer half the pasta, cover it with half the cheese, then the rest of the pasta and the rest of the cheese. I have found that this method prevents oil separation.

                                                          I dust paprika over the top (for color), drizzle another cup of milk over the whole thing, then either cover in foil and pop in the fridge, or bake. It's pretty forgiving--I've done it 350 and 375, and between 45 min and over an hour. The top will get brown and chewy and the sauce will bubble up around the edges.

                                                          1. greygarious Mar 8, 2013 10:49 AM

                                                            Using velveeta (or any processed American "cheese food") or evaporated milk as part of the recipe will prevent the hard cheeses from breaking or being grainy. This week I was short on both, so I was going to make a bechamel. Then I realized I had Trader Joe's version of Pirate's Booty so I nuked a heaping cup of the puffs in some milk, then stirred it up. It became smooth, and worked well to thicken the cheese sauce.

                                                            1. j
                                                              j8715 Mar 8, 2013 12:03 PM

                                                              John Thorne's recipe from Simple Cooking is quite good and not fussy.

                                                              1. BobB Mar 8, 2013 12:10 PM

                                                                The best I've ever made was from the Goumet Magazine cookbook. As I recall it had multiple cheeses, a bit of mustard, and panko bread crumbs. I recently ran across a recipe for chipotle mac & cheese with bacon, which sounds to me like it could be the world's most perfect food, but I haven't made it yet.

                                                                1. iL Divo Mar 10, 2013 06:18 PM

                                                                  not the recipe you're seeking and don't try this at home...
                                                                  my moms husband asked for mac&cheese one night when they were newly married. so mom did her usual mac&cheese (rather bland and a bit dry but still an ok version). he got home from work and she was aglee with her meal presentation. he popped a clot. he screamed "what is this $h!t?" she was deflated. his comment after imploding was "I asked for macaroni and cheese, that's all > macaroni and cheese and you give me a casserole of???"
                                                                  so he made it with strict instructions for her to pay attention.
                                                                  he boiled the elbows.
                                                                  drained but did not rinse the pasta.
                                                                  put back in the hot pot-added shredded cheddar cheese stirred and added lid. couple minutes later, lid off, stir and voi la, macaroni and cheese. wow I thought ~
                                                                  he took her head off for that? he literally only wanted macaroni and cheese-how bizarre.

                                                                  7 Replies
                                                                  1. re: iL Divo
                                                                    s
                                                                    sandylc Mar 10, 2013 06:54 PM

                                                                    I hope she divorced the a$$hole.

                                                                    1. re: sandylc
                                                                      j
                                                                      Jimisi Mar 11, 2013 10:21 AM

                                                                      LOL

                                                                      1. re: sandylc
                                                                        iL Divo Mar 13, 2013 08:39 PM

                                                                        she did not.
                                                                        she stayed by him even after repeated bullying from him and a temper the size of Houston. I once called him Satan to his face. I'm sorry if that offends anyone not my intention. but I'd had it with him and this was my mother after all.

                                                                        1. re: iL Divo
                                                                          s
                                                                          sandylc Mar 13, 2013 08:59 PM

                                                                          I am sorry.

                                                                          1. re: sandylc
                                                                            iL Divo Mar 14, 2013 09:05 PM

                                                                            thanks Sandy.....most of us only ever get 1 ((((mom))))

                                                                            1. re: iL Divo
                                                                              j
                                                                              Jimisi Mar 14, 2013 11:55 PM

                                                                              I'm sorry too, wasn't laughing at you. Blessings to you and yr mom.

                                                                              1. re: Jimisi
                                                                                iL Divo Mar 16, 2013 08:48 PM

                                                                                ..........oh we are blessed Jimisi.
                                                                                very very blessed, thanks to you also.........

                                                                    2. smaki Mar 11, 2013 02:40 PM

                                                                      Make gourmet-Velveeta mac & cheese: http://www.chow.com/videos/show/youre-doing-it-all-wrong/#!/show/my-go-to/104575/mark-mccluskys-go-to-diy-american-cheese melt the homemade solid result into not-yet-cooked-salted noodles.

                                                                      Video on how to make cheese sauce then macaroni and cheese. http://www.chow.com/videos/show/youre-doing-it-all-wrong/#!/show/youre-doing-it-all-wrong/123385/how-to-make-the-creamiest-cheesiest-macaroni-and-cheese Here is the CHOW recipe written out that goes with the video: http://www.chow.com/recipes/30436-homerooms-classic-macaroni-and-cheese

                                                                      Other recent CHOW threads on Mac and Cheese:
                                                                      http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/878917
                                                                      http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/881996

                                                                      1 Reply
                                                                      1. re: smaki
                                                                        smaki Mar 11, 2013 05:10 PM

                                                                        Another CHOW video of easy baked macaroni and cheese with tips: http://www.chow.com/videos/show/the-easiest-way/128490/how-to-make-easy-baked-macaroni-and-cheese with recipe on CHOW here: http://www.chow.com/recipes/30682-eas...

                                                                      2. t
                                                                        truman Mar 14, 2013 08:05 AM

                                                                        Traditional:
                                                                        http://www.myrecipes.com/recipe/creamy-four-cheese-macaroni-10000000222589/ though I use extra Cheddar instead of the Velveeta, and seasoned breadcrumbs instead of the melba toast crumbs. This version lends itself well to add-ins like veggies or meat.

                                                                        Baked:
                                                                        http://www.marthastewart.com/331828/emerils-three-cheese-baked-macaroni without the bacon (it doesn't add much

                                                                        )

                                                                        Grandma's version:
                                                                        Cook 2 C (dry) elbow macaroni and drain. Mix with 2 C shredded cheddar cheese, 2 T butter, and 1 can cream of tomato soup. Bake 325F for 1 hour.

                                                                        Over-the-top: Croque Monsieur mac n cheese!
                                                                        http://www.foodnetwork.com/recipes/cr... but with baked or Virginia ham instead of boiled (less moisture)

                                                                        1. m
                                                                          moreace01 Mar 14, 2013 08:44 PM

                                                                          I love mac and cheese. Like even Kraft dinner or velveeta shells and cheese. I've made Martha's and it was good, but not my fav. I would love to try the Patti Labelle recipe but to be quite honest, it scares me a little.

                                                                          My all-time favorite recipe comes from the Inn at Little Washington cookbook - aged gouda and parmesan in reduced heavy cream. A little garlic, shallot and julienned ham.

                                                                          And then they go all crazy over the top and serve it in baskets made out of parmesan tuilles...

                                                                          1. j
                                                                            jpc8015 Mar 16, 2013 09:03 PM

                                                                            I make macaroni and cheese as a means of using up odds and ends of cheese leftover in my refrigerator.

                                                                            I make a roux, add milk and stir until thickened. Once the sauce has thickened I take it off the heat and add all of my firmer cheeses like Cheddar, bleu, Swiss, parm...If I am using a softer cheese like fresh mozzarella or brie I do not add it at this point.

                                                                            At this point I boily my tube pasta, elbows, penne, ziti, rigatoni...whatever, until it is very al dente. I toss the boiled pasta and the sauce together then throw in cubes of softer cheese if I am using it. Toss it all together, pour it into a baking dish, top it with some breadcrumbs, and bake at about 400 until it is hot and bubbly.

                                                                            1. k
                                                                              kseiverd Jul 21, 2013 07:01 AM

                                                                              SIL made martha S's recipe for her daughter's b-day... one of her favorite foods. It was very tasty but NOT cheap to make and took a bit of prep. Think it had 5-6 different cheeses... and a few NOT your garden varieties.

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