Macaroni & Cheese
52 Recipes, from simple to sublime
Paper back 2001 ISBN: 0375757007
We all love mac and cheese here but especially my daughter, Sarita, who's been experimenting with different recipes since she first started cooking. She even had one of her macaroni and cheese recipes published in the cookbook Hungry for Home, Stories from food across the Carolinas. We've both been wanting this book since I checked it out at the library several years ago. I was thrilled when it was offered to me from my wish list on paper back swap recently. It was hard to choose which recipe to pick to try first, but we finally decided on Baked Four Cheese Pasta. It was fantastic.
The only color photo in this one is the great looking bowl of mac and cheese on the front cover. There are cute nostalgic looking black and white drawings through out the book. In addition to the recipes from the author there are recipes from many well-known chefs, including Bobby Flay, Rocco Dispirito, Rick Bayless and many more. Also in the back, included are the chefs' Biographies.
Chapters included are:
The Classic Dish
Mac and Cheese Today
There are recipe that are truly simple, using only a few ingredients and one or two well known cheeses and also those more spectacular, which use things like lobster, truffles or truffle oils, wild mushrooms and exotic cheeses. I can't wait to try more recipes from this book and I'm sure I'll use this book many times. If you love mac and cheese too then this would be a great addition to your cookbook collection.
Baked Four-Cheese Pasta
Makes 4 to 6 servings
8 tablespoons butter, plus extra for the baking dish
1 pound penne
4 cups whole milk *
6 tablespoons flour
1 1/2 teaspoon Kosher salt
1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
2 cups (1/2 pound) grated sharp Cheddar Cheese
2 cups (1/2 pound) grated Asiago cheese
2 cups (1/2 pound) grated fontina cheese
1 cup plain bread crumbs
1/2 cup (2 ounces) grated Parmesan cheese
2 tablespoons butter, melted
1 cup heavy cream
1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Butter a 9 by 13 inch baking dish or 2 1/2 quart casserole.
2. Bring 6 quarts of salted water to a boil. Add the past and cook, stirring occasionally, until AL dente, 10 to 12 minutes. Drain the pasta and rinse with cold water. Drain again and place in a large bowl.
3. In a medium saucepan over medium heat, bring the milk to a boil. Remove from the heat.
4. In a medium, heavy-bottomed saucepan over medium high heat, melt the 9 tablespoons of butter. Reduce the heat to low and whisk in the flour, cooking for 3 to 4 minutes. Be careful not to brown the mixture. Slowly add the hot milk, whisking constantly (constant whisking will ensure that there are no lumps). Add the salt and cayenne, raise the heat to medium, and simmer, stirring constantly, until the mixture has thickened, 8 to 10 minutes.
5. Remove from the heat and add 1 cup each of the grated Cheddar, Asiago, and fontina, whisking until the cheeses are melted. Pour the cheese sauce over the pasta, tossing to coat the pasta evenly.
6. Place half of the coated pasta in the buttered dish and distribute the remaining grated Cheddar, Asiago, and fontina over the top. Cover with the remaining pasta.
7. In a mixing bowl, toss together the bread crumbs, Parmesan, and melted butter. Pour the heavy cream over the pasta and evenly distribute the bread crumb mixture over the top. Bake on the middle shelf until the top is light brown and the mixture is bubbling, 30 to 35 minutes.
*We used 1% milk since that's the only kind we buy. It worked fine. Also the serving sizes must be huge since we got several more servings and they were big ones at that.