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What To Do With All That Cheese

Make macaroni and cheese, of course. But every time I make it, the cheese sauce separates. While it still tastes good, it isn't the most appealing looking dish I have made. And getting the kids to eat it can be a problem. So what am I doing wrong? Does anyone have a great recipe for mac and cheese that will allow me to use whatever scraps and shards I have floating around in the refrigerator?

11 Responses to “What To Do With All That Cheese”

  1. Making Macaroni and cheese is not as difficult as you may think but the secret is as fattening as it gets. You need the same part butter as cheese, believe it or not. Heat the butter and stir in the cheese slowly…this is as difficult as risotto, you can’t stop stirring or the cheese separates. This is why Kraft Mac and Cheese was invented. You can try Annie’s Shells as a somewhat healthier alternative and! tastier.

  2. I have tried Annie’s Shells, which is why I prefer to make my own. I have had good results with bechamel based sauces. But I am looking for a specific recipe. Does anyone have a good one?

  3. The only recipe I use is this one, which was from Saveur (Nov/Dec ’95) and was passed along by a good friend who’s a VERY good cook:¾ cup milk¾ cup creamEqual portions of cheddar, gruyere, parmesan, totaling 2 cups½ lb. medium elbow macaronibuttersalt and pepperground white peppercayenne½ c. bread crumbs (I use panko)Preheat oven to 350°. Cook 1/2 lb. medium elbow macaroni in a large pot of boiling salted water until tender, about 6 minutes. Drain, toss with 2 tbsp. butter in a medium bowl, and place in a baking dish. Heat milk and cream in a medium saucepan over medium heat. Season with salt, freshly ground white pepper, and a pinch of cayenne. Stir in 2 cups total of grated cheddar, gruyere, and parmesan cheeses. When cheese melts, pour sauce over macaroni and mix well. Sprinkle with 1/2 cup bread crumbs and dot with 2 tbsp. butter. Bake till golden brown and bubbly, 30–35 minutes. Serves 6–8.MY notes:I buy similar-sized pieces of each cheese and then measure the total amount after shredding; that’s how I determine if I’m doubling/tripling/quadrupling the total recipe, which is usually the case b/c I tend to make this when I have a big group coming.I also skip the butter over the pasta step, but include butter with the bread crumbs. Finally, I throw the pasta in to the pot of ooey gooey cheesy goodness, rather than stir it around in the baking dish. I’ve never had anything but raves about this dish, and haven’t had an issue with sauce separating…let me know if you try it! 🙂

  4. This looks great, and a bit different too. No flour to bind the fat. How firm is it after baking? Do you need a bowl, or can it be served on a plate? Regardless, it looks like fun so I’ll try it and report back.Thanks!

  5. Definite fine on a plate! Not runny at all. And really, with all that good cheese, how can it be bad?!? 🙂 Enjoy!

  6. Good point! As you may know, cheese is one of the four food groups that are a part of every good diet!

  7. Btw, I forgot to mention that I neeeeeeeever use elbows. Too boring! 🙂

  8. I always start mine with a heavy cream bechemel, then slowly add the cheese. It never breaks, and it is never greasy! Just a thought!

  9. I think that I am impatient, and use too high a heat. I just love the dish, so I rush. I also burn myself while eating it straight from the oven!

  10. I was clearing out some space in my freezer yesterday when I came across a container of my mac ‘n cheese. Of course, I had completely forgotten it was in there, and the ice crystals on top of it ALMOST made me toss it. Instead, I decided to let it defrost and see how ‘burned’ it was. After a few hours in the fridge and about 30 minutes in my toaster oven on 275-300, I realized that my house smelled delicious. Know what? It was (still) FANTASTIC. Seriously. I won’t even tell you how long it’s been in there-other than to say it was in ’07. You’ve got to try this recipe! 🙂

  11. This week, mostly because the cheese drawer is full!

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