NEW! Google Custom Search

Loading

Bechamel in 75 minutes...

Ballottine's picture

...and what a perfect  Bechamel it is! Worth every minute.   Never again that quicky stuff I have been making all my life...(LOL)


Thank you so much for introducing me to La Bonne.  Had you not endorsed it, I would have not bought it, and would have never known how deep my kitchen lacuna is.  I no longer cook  anything without reading about it in La Bonne first.  I just love that book.


A good friend of mine turned 80 on Monday, she had her six children, their spouses and grandchildren in town for the entire weekend.  Of course, I was helping with food as much as I could. (Saturday I cooked for multitudes in my church.) I was told that five of the grandchildren are picky eaters and will eat only a certain brand supermarket  mac&cheese. I was asked to make mac&cheese for every meal and instructed not to worry about the kids.  he-he-he! Not when I can call La Bonne to the rescue.


Yes, I made the boxed stuff for their first meal, the kids are gone, but most of it is still in grandma's refrigerator and mac&cheese boxes are in her cupboard. On day 1, I also made Macaroni au Gratin (p.566) for their first meal.  Let me tell you, not only the kids ate it all, the rest of the family begged that I make more the next day.  ( I added 2 fresh bay leaves to the bouquet garni, and disposed of them in 3-4 minutes. Everyone liked the taste, although no one could name it.)


I love the little details  in La Bonne, such as: "..butter it (dish) very lightly; any excees will rise to the surface as oil."  or "you could....but these simplifications are detrimental to the sauce."


I wonder why it took so long to translate the book into English... Would you share what  recipes you use from this book, and thanks again.  Bal


 


So much to cook; so little time.

 

So much to cook; so little time.

JillElise's picture

(post #34342, reply #1 of 63)

I know your note was meant for someone specific, but which book are you talking about? The St.-Ange book? Just curious.


It sounds like you are really enjoying yourself!!


Jill Elise Vancouver BC
Ballottine's picture

(post #34342, reply #2 of 63)

Yes.  Please forgive me.  (There is only one La Bonne in my life, therefore, I  thought  there is only one La Bonne.) I stand corrected. lol  Bal

 


So much to cook; so little time.

 

So much to cook; so little time.

JillElise's picture

(post #34342, reply #14 of 63)

No need to stand corrected - I was really just asking, not correcting!!


I've had this book for many years, along with a few of the other cooking classics from France. It's a whole 'nother world, isn't it?


Jill Elise Vancouver BC
Ballottine's picture

(post #34342, reply #23 of 63)

I've had this book for many years, along with a few of the other cooking classics from France. It's a whole 'nother world, isn't it?


I had it for a while too before I started "perusing" it,  the book is definetly  "not inviting" and should not be "judged by its covers." (lol) What  other "French classics" you have?


What I like about La Bonne "mac&cheese" is that you don't  bake it in the oven at all, just brown it under the broiler and the pasta texture is  lovely while the crust is to die for. LOL.  Bal


 


So much to cook; so little time.

 

So much to cook; so little time.

JillElise's picture

(post #34342, reply #27 of 63)

I got the English version when it was translated (last year I think), and it's funny how differently I see it than I do the French. It is not inviting, no photos! The French, an old copy I didn't even realize was the same as the Enlgish until I got the English (this is a problem of having too many books and I'm ashamed not to keep better track)  never occured to me that it should be more inviting, it's a cookbook for heavens sake, a book of directions. My philosophy has changed.


Have to get to work (120 deboned chicken pieces, two roasted turkeys, many veg, many salad-type stuff) EEEK!! I really have to get to work!


 


 


 


Jill Elise Vancouver BC
Ballottine's picture

(post #34342, reply #45 of 63)

It is not inviting, no photos! The French, an old copy I didn't even realize was the same as the Enlgish until I got the English


Do you mean to say that French version  has pictures?


Hope your food event went well yesterday.  How many peoplewas that for?  Bal


 


So much to cook; so little time.

 

So much to cook; so little time.

JillElise's picture

(post #34342, reply #51 of 63)

No, it doesnt have pictures. Sorry - I wasn't making sense. I'm busy working and not feeling great so my mind is not very clear.


I'm still cooking, yesterday was a turkey dinner for four on a little feature film, today is a chicken BBQ for a TV series. Chicken breasts (boneless), red, orange and green peppers, sliced red onion, and zucchini on the grill. Lots of salad stuff around that. To imagine the amount of food, think a BBQ where people eat constantly for 8 hours.


Jill Elise Vancouver BC
Ballottine's picture

(post #34342, reply #53 of 63)

Sorry you are not feeling well, but your work sounds so interesting.  Is the the food eaten, or  just for filming?


think a BBQ where people eat constantly for 8 hours.


I hope they don't have Napoleonic pretensions and are not expecting  fresh everything every half an hour. (S)


Hope you feel better.  Bal


 


So much to cook; so little time.

 

So much to cook; so little time.

soupereasy's picture

(post #34342, reply #4 of 63)

OK, now everyone is over my head. La Bonne by St Ange?


This book tells me how to make things take longer, when it has been drummed into my head to make things more quickly?

CookiM0nster's picture

(post #34342, reply #5 of 63)

LOL.

soupereasy's picture

(post #34342, reply #10 of 63)

Can you tell that I am very easily confused? I hope it doesn't show! LOL

Ballottine's picture

(post #34342, reply #6 of 63)

La Bonne Cuisine for French home cooking by Madame E. Saint-Ange. 


 786 pages crammed with info. ( the info I was never able to find in one place.) From what I understand this is French counterpart to our JOY of Cooking. It does not tell you how to make things quicker, it tells you how to make things well and helps you (me) to avoid pitfalls.  I wish I had this book when I started cooking.  Bal


 


 


 


So much to cook; so little time.

 

So much to cook; so little time.

soupereasy's picture

(post #34342, reply #9 of 63)

Thank you.

ICDOCEAN1's picture

(post #34342, reply #7 of 63)

I don't think that the note was meant for anyone in specific.


Bechemel is a favorite around here and naturally, I bit on this one...


Page, 52-54 in La Bonne Cuisine de Madame E. Saint-Ange: The Original Companion for French Home Cooking


That is what I found!  No recipe to share, of course.

Jean's picture

(post #34342, reply #11 of 63)

You can peek inside the book. pg 52 53.  There is a recipe for lean bechamel that starts with a mirapoix, which is cooked, removed, has a roux blanc added to the same pot, boiling milk is added and everything stirred together and cooked forever, then strained at the end. Busy cooks everywhere do it this way all the time. It's great for quick tuna casseroles.


 




Birthdays are good for you. The more you have, the longer you live.
http://www.thebreastcancersite.com/

A  clear conscience is usually the sign of a bad memory.
http://www.thebreastcancersite.com/
help to provide free mammograms for women in need
ICDOCEAN1's picture

(post #34342, reply #12 of 63)

Thanks Jean...I just put in 52-53 and printed the instructions.  Bechemel was not coming up at all...

knitpik's picture

(post #34342, reply #18 of 63)

I don't think you can use the page no. You have to look for a specific word such as "sauce". First you look through the index to find the page no. then do a search on whatever you're looking for. Sometimes it won't take certain words so you have to be a little creative. 'Bechamel' didn't work for me so I tried 'sauce'.

ICDOCEAN1's picture

(post #34342, reply #20 of 63)

Either way.  I used page numbers and a page listing came up and I was able to click on 52 to peek at the recipe.


Looks like a good one.

Gretchen's picture

(post #34342, reply #15 of 63)

Oh, Thank YOU. I never knew pulling teeth was that easy!!  All that in 75 minutes too. YOu are right--such a great way to fix mac and cheese. 
I liked Becca's but have even gone to doing my own--both with bechamel and with eggs. Rich!!

Gretchen

Gretchen
CookiM0nster's picture

(post #34342, reply #17 of 63)

Actually, when it comes to mac and cheese my favorite is the full-on artery clogging version - macaroni cooked al dente, mixed with an insane amount of grated cheese and a bit of salt, into the casserole dish with a bit of milk poured over it and baked until brown at the edges and crusty. But then I've never been a fan of bechemel in much of anything. I don't like the texture.

TracyK's picture

(post #34342, reply #19 of 63)

That's what I made the last time, almost! Macaroni, layered with tons of grated cheddar and salt & pepper, then a blend of egg and milk poured over. Bake till browned and bubbly. It was great.

CT poster in bad standing since 2000.

Gretchen's picture

(post #34342, reply #21 of 63)

That was my last one too. Would you post the amounts--I am in Denver and the DGDs would love it--maybe!!

Gretchen

Gretchen
TracyK's picture

(post #34342, reply #24 of 63)

Hey Gretchen -- I don't have very specific amounts, but I'll give you the recipe I was given. The next time I make it I will probably use a higher egg-to-milk ratio, it was a bit liquidy for me:


Grandma Tewksbury's Baked Macaroni and Cheese 


Cook approximately 1 lb of pasta until al dente. I usually use fusilli, but the traditional elbow macaroni will work as well.


Shred sharp cheddar cheese - you'll need at least 1 - 1 1/2 pounds.  The more cheese the better, of course! 


To explain the above - I usually cook enough pasta and shred enough cheese to fill whatever casserole I'm using. 


Lightly grease a casserole dish, then add a thin layer of pasta, then a thin layer of cheese, then salt and pepper. Continue this layering until casserole is full, ending with a cheese layer. 


Mix 2 cups milk with 2 eggs - I just whip with a fork.  Pour over the casserole until the liquid comes to about 1" below the surface.  As my mother wrote it when she sent this to me, "just poke your finger down along the side to see where the milk comes to."  If you need to add a little more milk, go ahead.  If you're making a very large casserole and need a whole cup more, add another egg as well. 


Bake at 350 degrees for approximately 1 hour or until browned and bubbly. 


This is a very forgiving recipe.  If you have something else in the oven at 375 degrees, it can go in at that temperature for a little less time.  If you have something else in the oven at 325 degrees, it can go in at that temperature for a little more time. 


CT poster in bad standing since 2000.

Gretchen's picture

(post #34342, reply #31 of 63)

Many thanks. That is pretty much what I did for my last endeavor for DGS. It was the milk and eggs I "needed".

Gretchen

Gretchen
TracyK's picture

(post #34342, reply #32 of 63)

I used rotini... it seemed to really hold on to the cheese & custardy bits better. SO good... particularly the corners. :-)

CT poster in bad standing since 2000.

Marcia's picture

(post #34342, reply #42 of 63)

Tracy's mac and cheese can be made in a pie plate with a half pound of macaroni. I'm surprised you never encountered this version, since it's common in the south, and way better than the traditional version, IMO. I think you'll be pleased.


Oh, with a half pound of pasta, use one egg and 1 to 1 and 1/2 cups milk. It gets brown and crispy around the edges and everybody wants those. But some people think it's awful and want it all creamy. It depends on what one grows up with, I suppose.

Gretchen's picture

(post #34342, reply #46 of 63)

Yes, this is the one I made recently and it seemed a bit more cheesy and crusty, etc.


It is really very odd, but I did not grow up with mac and cheese, nor did my DH. I can remember Mother making it occasionally--and it was delicious--crusty brown cheese in a FiestaWare blue casserole dish. 
And I never served it during our children's growing up years!  DD was here last night and we were talking about it again.  Up until recent years (and I began making it when exDIL was vegetarian, for a big cheese dish) I had never made macaroni and cheese.


Gretchen
Gretchen
Jean's picture

(post #34342, reply #48 of 63)

Years ago I made a semi-home made version. LOL. It wo uld be right up Sandra Lee's alley.  You start with  Krapt boxed, add a can of c.o.c. mushroom soup, sauteed onions and celery and either a can of drained tuna or 1/2 pound browned ground beef.


Call it comfort food. LOL. DH will gladly eat it any time I'll fix it.




Birthdays are good for you. The more you have, the longer you live.
http://www.thebreastcancersite.com/

A  clear conscience is usually the sign of a bad memory.
http://www.thebreastcancersite.com/
help to provide free mammograms for women in need
Marcia's picture

(post #34342, reply #49 of 63)

That's interesting. You missed out on a good and easy dish, but at least you've found it now.


 

Gretchen's picture

(post #34342, reply #52 of 63)

I'm not sure "missed out" is how I would define it. We ate pretty well!!  ;o)  I still don't  think of it as a first line of cuisine except for grands.  Of course, our grands all love it--and it comes from a box except when I am making it.


DGS was coming to our house for his birthday last October and I asked him what he wanted me to make. He said, "Baba, I want that meat that is real brown on the outside and the color of watermelon on the inside, and macaroni and cheese".


 


Gretchen
Gretchen