Monday, March 21, 2011

Girls' Weekend Mac & Cheese

So, for quite a while now I have been on a search for a creamy homemade macaroni and cheese recipe. I have made several baked macaroni recipes that were just too dry and didn't give my grown up "I grew up on boxed Kraft mac & cheese" palate the creaminess it was looking to taste.
When I got my Food & Wine magazine this month it had a recipe for "Stovetop Mac & Cheese with Cheese Crisps". This recipe included a substantial amount of mascarpone cheese, so I knew the title wouldn't be deceiving. (Here is the recipe, in case you are curious: www.foodandwine.com/recipes/stovetop-mac-and-cheese-with-cheese-crisps ).

Anyway, I decided the perfect time to try this recipe would be this last weekend when Matt was out of town and Lalaneya and I were having a girls' weekend. I stopped by Whole Foods on my way home from work on Friday and picked up the best quality cheeses I could find. Then I started shredding and working away to have the mac at least partially done when Lalaneya arrived. She arrived about half way through the shred fest and helped me with the rest of the recipe. The whole process took about 45 minutes, which isn't bad at all considering how long other mac and cheese recipes have taken me to prepare in the past.

We finally sat down to enjoy with our glasses of white wine and the mac and cheese was EXTREMELY creamy and very rich, bordering on too heavy. We each ate one medium sized bowl and we were stuffed to capacity. The best part of the recipe is the cheese crisps. They take the place of the traditional bread crumbs, except they are much more flavorful and don't create any unnecessary dryness like bread crumbs do sometimes.

I will definitely make this recipe again, except I think next time I will get more creative with the seasonings than the recipe suggests . . . perhaps adding some garlic and dry white wine to the roux mixture before I turn it into a cheese sauce. I would also probably reduce the amount of mascarpone cheese in the recipe to about 65%, just to eliminate the heaviness. Overall, this is a good recipe and I would suggest it for people who want a gourmet, grown up version of mac and cheese with the creaminess of Kraft but without all the artificial flavors and harmful preservatives.

2 comments:

  1. Have you tried Beecher's mac n cheese? I've heard it's great but haven't gotten a chance yet.

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  2. You know, I was just at Beecher's on Tuesday with my parents and I thought about it, but we had just chowed down on pastries at Le Panier. Their mac and cheese is definitely on my list of things to try soon :)

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