Your macaroni and cheese will always turn out if you always remember the following tips.

PASTA

(add an introductory statement)

Select a pasta noodle that will hold the cheese well.  A good choice includes the elbow macaroni, penne, cavatappi or cellantinni “corkscrew”, rotini, or shells.  (add pics)

The selected pasta should be cooked in a salted rolling boil water.

The select pasta should always be cooked “al dente” because it will continue to cook when it’s baked.  Read the packaged instructions carefully.  Overcooked pasta will become mushy when baked.  (add pics)

 

CHEESE
Mix and match a variety of cheese but don’t spend a fortune on the cheese.  A good cheddar for tanginess and a good melting cheese should work well.  For starters, a sharp cheddar and mild cheddar or monterey jack cheese should work well.
 (pics of blocks of various types of cheese)

Buy blocks of cheese and either shred or grate the cheese yourself.  It’s less expensive and it won’t have the additional additives that the pre-shredded cheese has so it will melt well.
(pics of grated and shredded cheese)

Don’t use processed cheese.

Cream cheese and sour cream make great additions to cheese if you prefer your macaroni and cheese extra creamy.

BUTTER – use REAL unsalted butter!

MILK

Whole milk, skim milk, half and half, evaporated milk and/or heavy cream is often used in macaroni and cheese.  The half-and-half, heavy cream and evaporated milk contributes to a creamier final product.  Any of the milk products can be used alone or in combination with each other. (pics of various types of milk)

SEASONINGS (optional)

Dry mustard, paprika, garlic powder, onion powder, nutmeg, white pepper, salt, worcestershire sauce, hot sauce or cayenne pepper, chipotle  (pics of various types of seasonings)

Determine the type of sauce you will use.

CHEESE SAUCE (french style) Roux, seasonings and milk products.  A roux is prepared on top of the stove to create a bechamel sauce and shredded cheese is added when the roux is finished and removed from the stove.  When the cheese it added to the bechamel sauce it becomes a mornay sauce.

CUSTARD SAUCE (southern style)
In a bowl, the eggs, seasonings and milk products are mixed together and poured over the macaroni and shredded cheese prior to putting into the oven.

TOPPING (optional)
Bread crumbs – bread crumbs mixed with butter and/or seasonings then added to the top of the macaroni and cheese.
Potato chips – crumbled and added to the top of macaroni and cheese.

PREPARATION

Layer your pasta, shredded cheese and cheese sauce/mixture.  Sprinkle with either paprika or chipotle.
(pic of the layering process)

Pre-heat the oven to 350-375 degrees and bake for 25-30 minutes and brown the top, if necessary.

 

Note:  Add a video of the process from the beginning to the end.

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