I'm Lindsay Ferrier, a Nashville writer with a passion for family travel, exploring Tennessee, and raising kids without losing my mind in the process. This is where I share my discoveries, along with occasional deep thoughts, pop culture tangents and a sprinkling of snark. Want to get in touch? Use the CONTACT form at the top of the page.
May 14, 2013
Seriously. It is.
This recipe is based on Martha Stewart’s very popular recipe for mac and cheese, which you can find all over the Internet- HOWEVER, if you’re familiar with Martha Stewart’s recipes, you know that they often contain ingredients that are difficult to find and steps that are tough to follow. So I did it my way– I added a few things, took out a few things, and I think the results are even better. AND you can find all the ingredients at your local grocery store! I added white truffle oil to mine, which I found at Kroger in the cooking oils- It’s expensive, but I think it takes this recipe to eleven and you only have to use a tiny bit.
It’s still a special occasion dish, but it will be a show-stopper at your next potluck– and if you make it for your family, it’ll last all week long– It’s very dense and rich, yet my entire family of picky eaters LOVES it.
–Heat oven to 375 degrees. Grease a 7 1/2 x 12 1/2 dish (I spray mine with butter flavored baking spray) and set aside.
–Put bread pieces in a medium bowl. Melt 2 tablespoons butter in small saucepan over medium heat. Pour butter into the bowl with bread and toss. Set the bread pieces aside.
–In a medium saucepan on medium heat, warm milk, making sure it does not boil.
–Melt 6 tablespoons butter in a high-sided skillet over medium heat. When butter bubbles, add flour. Cook, stirring, 1 minute. Make sure your flour/butter measurements are EXACT– Otherwise, the flour will clump together in the sauce.
–Slowly pour hot milk into flour-butter mixture while whisking. Continue cooking, whisking constantly, until the mixture bubbles and becomes thick. I like to pour in a tiny bit of milk at a time and let it thicken as I go.
–Remove the pan from the heat. Stir in salt, nutmeg, black pepper, cayenne pepper, 3 cups cheddar, and 1 1/2 cups Gruyere or 1 cup Romano. Stir in 1 1/2 teaspoons of white truffle oil. Set cheese sauce aside.
–Fill a large saucepan with water. Bring to a boil. Add macaroni and cook 2 to 3 fewer minutes than manufacturer’s directions, until outside of pasta is cooked and inside is underdone (It will continue cooking in the oven). Drain the macaroni in a colander, then rinse under cold running water. Drain well. Stir macaroni into the cheese sauce.
–Pour the mixture into your prepared dish. Sprinkle remaining 1 1/2 cups cheddar and 1/2 cup Gruyere or 1/4 cup pecorino Romano; scatter breadcrumbs over the top. Bake uncovered until browned on top, about 30 minutes.
–Transfer dish to a wire rack to cool for 5 minutes.