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macaroni and cheese

charly's picture

I am trying the recipe "classic macaroni and cheese"  today.  I am having a gathering tonight and since I have never made this particular recipe can I make it ahead.....like now.  Party is at 7:00.  Going with spareribs, baked beans, tomato/avacado/red onion salad with Greens on the side.  Some neighbors don't like avacado.  Why????  Can't live without them.  Thanks for your help!

Geoffchef's picture

(post #35867, reply #1 of 34)

It makes dandy leftovers, so I don't see why you couldn't cook it ahead of time and reheat.


 


ADAM'S APPLE, n.
A protuberance in the throat of man, thoughtfully provided by Nature to keep the rope in place.
Ambrose Bierce - The Devil's Dictionary


 

 

ADAM'S APPLE, n.
A protuberance in the throat of man, thoughtfully provided by Nature to keep the rope in place.
Ambrose Bierce - The Devil's Dictionary

 

charly's picture

(post #35867, reply #2 of 34)

That's what I should have done!  However I mixed it all together and saved until dinner to bake, well the pasta got too soft since it absorbed all the cheese sauce....it puffed up and became dry.  I quickly mixed more milk and cheese and baked it.  What a failure.  IF I try again it will be just for a quiet dinner for husband and me...and a different cheese because it wasn't cheesy enough for me.  I used an organic extra sharp white cheddar plus the monteray jack suggested, but no flavor.  Hmmmm, where did I go wrong????

Gretchen's picture

(post #35867, reply #3 of 34)

Needs to be sharp cheddar and other "sharp" cheese, like asiago or fontina (Italian) etc.


Was your recipe a roux recipe or eggs and milk? I have come to prefer the latter style recipe for letting the cheese stand out.


Gretchen
Gretchen
Marcia's picture

(post #35867, reply #5 of 34)

With the eggs and milk, I find the cheese flavor is much more dominant. It seems that many people prefer a creamier version, but our favorite features a pronounced cheese flavor.

Plover's picture

(post #35867, reply #6 of 34)

Too late for this round obviously, but here is what I would have to prep this ahead: Make the sauce and cook the pasta in advance, then assemble and bake at the last minute. Probably need extra baking time because the ingredients would not be warm.

charly's picture

(post #35867, reply #7 of 34)

Thank you for the follow up.  Not working with milk, flour and cheese often I was fearful that it would separate if left sitting.  Next time I will try it.  It sounded like a great recipe, but it really turned out awful.  I hate apologizing at dinner time.   

AJ12754's picture

(post #35867, reply #9 of 34)

I love the recipe BEFORE I baked it.  When I make it again, I'll skip the baking part.

The trouble today is that almost everyone is famous and almost no-one is interesting. (paraphrased Tina Brown)

Cave obdurationem cordis

charly's picture

(post #35867, reply #15 of 34)

Gretchen,  the recipe came from the last issue of Fine Cooking. Yes, it was a roux base.....the cheeses were Extra sharp White cheddar and Monteray Jack.  No flavor whatsoever....husband asked, "when are you throwing out the macaroni and cheese?  What a waste.


 

Gretchen's picture

(post #35867, reply #16 of 34)

Well, I can't really comment on their choices except to say that I like Monterey Jack in a lot of things, but if I really want the dish to say "cheese", it's going to be cheddar, asiago, parm, etc. If I want it creamy then it will be jack, mozzarella, etc.


I made some mac and cheese for DGS and used some white vermont cheddar. His comment was, Baba, where's the cheese.


Gretchen
Gretchen
charly's picture

(post #35867, reply #17 of 34)

DGS.....lingo I don't know and can't figure out! 


But, I agree with him....."where's the cheese?"

Gretchen's picture

(post #35867, reply #18 of 34)

Dear grandson.  Well, it is the same cheese you used. He just wanted it to be yellow, and thought there wasn't any cheese in it. There was a LOT.

Gretchen

Gretchen
charly's picture

(post #35867, reply #19 of 34)

Gretchen, thanks, I loved that.....I will use it in the future with them! I have 8...4 boys and 4 girls.   I see by your profile you live in Charlotte.  I go their twice a year to call on the Boy Scouts of America.  Your country is beautiful, especially at this time of the year and in October.  I just got back and we had a wonderful time.  Maybe you can suggest a good restaurant to me for the future. I live in Dallas.


There was a 1.25 of White Cheddar and 1/2 lb of Monteray and still no cheesy taste.  I don't get it.  I think I have said enough about the macaroni and cheese :)


 

Gretchen's picture

(post #35867, reply #20 of 34)

Well, dang my man. You needed to inquire before coming. We just had a small fest, and we would have loved it. Be SURE to tell us the next time. We DO now have wonderful dining possibilities.

Gretchen

Gretchen
charly's picture

(post #35867, reply #21 of 34)

Next time will be Oct.  I'll be asking for a tip right around then.....and thanks. 


sorry I missed the feast or fest!!!

Gretchen's picture

(post #35867, reply #22 of 34)

Give me the date when you can. We'll be gone at some times that month I know. But can still give you recs, and if you have any control, we could have a "fest".

Gretchen

Gretchen
charly's picture

(post #35867, reply #23 of 34)

Will do....I am not really in control of my time, but if its a weekend included then for sure I'll let you know.

Dashx's picture

(post #35867, reply #24 of 34)

I've made the classic mac and cheese recipe that was printed in the FC issue #91, several times. It's important to use the sharpest cheddar you can find; if the cheddar is not very sharp, then substitute cheddar for most of the jack. In my area, many so-called sharp cheddars are in name only. They taste the same as mild. The last time I made this, I did not have jack, and used all sharp cheddar. It was very tasty, but I think the jack lends a certain texture that helps keeps the sauce together. I thinks it's important to use at least the ingredients as listed; the thyme, w-sauce and tobasco really enhance the cheese flavor. sometimes i add green chiles and bacon. Also, I saute the onions first for an added flavor boost, and as another poster suggested, make it separately, assemble at the last minute, and it comes out great.

Glenys's picture

(post #35867, reply #25 of 34)

Are you our first Las Vegian?

Gretchen's picture

(post #35867, reply #26 of 34)

You so cute--always!!  'O)

Gretchen

Gretchen
Dashx's picture

(post #35867, reply #27 of 34)

LOL...maybe.  I've posted a bit in the last few months, and have rated many recipes.  No other Las Vegans here?

kathymcmo's picture

(post #35867, reply #28 of 34)

Welcome to CT from another newbie.


Maybe we should call you a Las Vegasite to avoid confusion with vegans (since you made the mac and cheese I guess you're not one of those :-)

Dashx's picture

(post #35867, reply #33 of 34)

Thank you, and looks like we have something in common, boomeritis and August b-days. I really enjoy the site, and appreciate all the help and info on the boards here.

kathymcmo's picture

(post #35867, reply #34 of 34)

It's a wonderful group here and I'm glad you're joining in! From one Leo to another ...

charly's picture

(post #35867, reply #29 of 34)

Well, I am glad to hear someone actually made the FC recipe.  I will definately try again and take your advice.  One question....after creating the cheese mixture how do I maintain the texture to avoid any separation? 

Dashx's picture

(post #35867, reply #30 of 34)

I've made it 7 times already, and no problem with separation, even the 2 times I made it ahead of time.  When making the roux, and finishing the sauce, make sure not to over heat while cooking.  When I've made it 1 day ahead of time, I did not mix the sauce with the noodles until ready to bake, and I did not make the noodles ahead of time. 

charly's picture

(post #35867, reply #32 of 34)

I can't tell you how I appreciatge this site!  What friends indeed.....I will make it again when I have lost the 2 lbs I gained testing and tasting.  Finally decided to rid myself of the leftovers.  I'll be back.

schnitzel's picture

(post #35867, reply #31 of 34)

To avoid separation, turn the heat off when adding the cheese.

And be sure to undercook the macaroni, it should be just barely al dente.

Geoffchef's picture

(post #35867, reply #4 of 34)

What Gretchen said. I also tend to use this as an opportunity to clean up the various bits of cheese in the fridge. I always start with the sharp cheddar and maybe 1/4 good parmesan, but I've had interesting flavours with bits of smoked Gouda and various bleus. Since some people don't like bleu cheeses I just dot them on top so you can see where they are.

 


ADAM'S APPLE, n.
A protuberance in the throat of man, thoughtfully provided by Nature to keep the rope in place.
Ambrose Bierce - The Devil's Dictionary


 

 

ADAM'S APPLE, n.
A protuberance in the throat of man, thoughtfully provided by Nature to keep the rope in place.
Ambrose Bierce - The Devil's Dictionary

 

mer's picture

(post #35867, reply #10 of 34)

you shouldn't have waited to bake it. Next time, bake it, then cool, then reheat it.

FL.Cook's picture

(post #35867, reply #11 of 34)

Did that.  Not with this recipe, but with another.  It was wonderful after the first baking, but when I heated it up it was dry and not wonderful.  In the future I will make it as I need it and then bake it.

Carole