Saturday, October 4, 2008

Macaroni and Cheese

For a meat-eating hippie, I sure have posted a lot of vegetarian--vegan, even--recipes. And again I shall not disappoint my more traditional hippie friends--here is my favorite recipe for Macaroni and Cheese, which, thanks to my good friend Raven, I modified to use egg yolks instead of flour. I used whole wheat bread flour the first time I made it, and that tasted awful. The egg yolks tasted wonderful the first time I did that, but I think I overcooked them during the sauce-making stage because the end result was a little more firm than saucy. But my family didn't care--they wolfed it down with relish and said not to change a thing! Even so, I have modified the recipe so that the yolks are not pre-cooked so long, and I added garlic to try and recapture the remembered bliss of eating The Old Mac at Montage under the overpass in Portland. Still not garlicky enough for that, but I think my kids would mutiny if there were more garlic than shown here.


* 2 cups Rustichella d'Abruzzo 100%-whole-grain-farro canestrini (one 8.8-oz package)
* 2/3 cup whole milk, or mixture of milk and cream
* 1 and 1/2 teaspoon salt, divided
* yolks of 2 large eggs or 3 pullet eggs
* 4 tablespoons fat (butter preferred, but use solid fat, bacon drippings, lard, etc. - melt before adding)
* 1/2 teaspoon pepper
* 1 heaping teaspoon dry mustard
* 1-4 cloves garlic, minced or pressed (optional)
* 2 cups grated sharp cheddar cheese (1 lb by weight--aged longer is better, I find)
* dry bread crumbs from whole wheat sourdough

Preheat oven to 400°.

Cook the macaroni until al dente, drain, and place in a casserole. Mix together the melted fat, milk, yolks, salt, pepper, mustard and garlic. Add all but 1/2 cup of the grated cheese, mix well, and heat stirring until the cheese is almost melted. Pour over the canestrini shells in the casserole and mix together, sprinkle the top with reserved cheese and dried bread crumbs, and bake for 15-20 minutes or until the top is nicely browned and the sauce bubbles.


Bleu Cheese said...

Hmm, I am starting to think that broiling quickly is the way to go--I will try that next time. Doing it the way I currently have it shown, the sauce seems perfect before baking but then gets too oily once it bakes enough to brown the top.

Bleu Cheese said...

Modified the recipe as shown in the intro--broiling is not the route I took. I made sure not to pre-cook the yolk-based sauce too long (don't even need to make sure the cheese is melted), and it turned out perfect.