Macaroni and Cheese and Voting

I haven’t found too many people who did not love macaroni and cheese! It is super easy to pull together, but the key is to make a smooth and creamy white sauce.  When discussing this in class today  one of my students said, ” No worries Mrs. Lupo, just pull out a box of Kraft Macaroni and Cheese.  It is smooth and creamy every time.”    

Did you realize that Kraft Macaroni and Cheese has been around since 1937?  I had no idea!  My son the Athlete kids his dad to this day about his failure at preparing Mac and Cheese for him using Kraft.  So this really proves a point.  You cannot cook if #1 You do not know how to measure and # 2 Your timing is awful!!  His failure was judging the pasta.  It was really a la dente!

In doing some research before writing this I found some interesting information from Martha Stewart.  I found it quite interesting.  She starts with some history of macaroni and cheese then goes into the types of cheeses to use.  I pretty much have to stick with cheddar at school.  I do not have a boat  load of money so many of the cheeses that melt smoothly are much more expensive.   I talking about Gruyère or Provolone or White Cheddar.  These are all good choices. Mixing these cheeses also produces a good product.  But I have to tell you that the recipe that I am sharing with you today is my favorite.  I am using a mix from Mueller’s and the recipe that came from the cookbook that came with my microwave.  It is nothing fancy just plain good macaroni and cheese!  

 

Here is what you will need:

2-4 Tablespoons of butter ( the recipe calls for 4 T I usually use 2 I have found no difference)

3 Tablespoons of all purpose flour (Please read here for measuring.  Most mistakes occur from too much flour)

1 teaspoon salt

1/4 teaspoon white pepper ( you can use black pepper)

1/4 teaspoon dry mustard

2 cups milk

2 cups shredded cheddar

To prepare the white sauce use a microwaveable safe dish.  Melt butter and add flour, salt, pepper and dry mustard.  Whisk together.  Add 2 cups of milk.  Whisk.  Microwave for six minutes.  Stop the cooking process every 2 minutes and whisk ingredients.  By the time you get to minute 5 the sauce should start to thicken.  Depending on the wattage of your microwave you may or may not have to cook the sauce longer.  The sauce should be the consistency of buttermilk.  My students did not know what that was so I had to try another comparison. Ensure, Chocolate syrup, instant pudding before it set up.  Here is a photograph to give you a good indicator.

     

It should hold on to the back of the spoon.  Now add about 1 1/2 cups of shredded cheese.  Cheese will melt easier if it is at room temperature.  I like to shred a large amount of cheese and freeze it.  It just saves a lot of time.  If you do this make sure to let the cheese get to room temperature.  Frozen cheese reduces the temperature of the white sauce considerably and the sauce will not be creamy.  

Why do I use the microwave to make the white sauce?  It is easier.  You do not have to stand over it and stir constantly.  You are not as likely to scorch it.  For high school students and beginner cooks it is pretty fail proof.  I will say that many students have made mortar for bricks instead of a medium white sauce because they did not measure the flour correctly or they cooked the sauce too long.  Again this is measuring correctly and timing the two keys to successful cooking. 

Before starting the sauce put the water on for cooking 8 ounces of elbow macaroni.  Cook according to the directions.  Cook for about 9 – 11 minutes.  I found about 9 minutes to be good for me. Start the timing process after the pasta come back to a full boil.   Now here is something interesting that I learned from Martha.  Rinse the elbows in cold water.  This will remove the starch which could make the macaroni and cheese mealy in texture.  I have had that to happen and never knew what caused. it.  It works, though!       Place the cooked and rinsed pasta in a 2 quart casserole  dish.  Pour the cheese sauce over it and top with remaining cheese.  Bake at 350 degrees for about 25 minutes or until slightly golden brown and bubbly. 

Here is the cheese sauce.

Ready to bake for about 25 minutes at 350 degrees.

Ready to enjoy!

Macaroni and Cheese

 8 ounces of elbow macaroni cooked according to package about 9 – 11 minutes rinse in cold water and place in a 2 quart casserole

2- 4 Tablespoons of butter (  2 works as well as 4 for me I can tell no difference)

1 teaspoon salt

1/4 teaspoon pepper

1/4 teaspoon dry mustard

2 cups milk ( I always use  cold skim milk)

2 cups of shredded sharp cheddar cheese. 

Cook elbow macaroni according to directions and rinse with cold water.  Place in a 2 quart casserole dish. 

Heat butter in a microwaveable dish.  Stir in flour and seasonings.  Add milk.  Whisk.  Microwave for 6 minutes.  Stop the microwave every 2 minutes and whisk. After 5 minutes of cooking time the sauce should start to thicken. Add about 2 1/2 cups of cheese.  Whisk until smooth.  Pour sauce over pasta.  Top with remaining cheese.  Cook at 350 degrees for 25 minutes or until bubbly. 

Would you like to see the results of the cookoff today and vote for your favorite?  Some students are trying to earn some extra points .  Leave a comment for your favorite group.

1st Block Kitchen 1

1st Block Kitchen 2

1st Block Kitchen 4

1st Block Kitchen 5

1st Block Kitchen 6

2nd Block Kitchen 1

2nd Block Kitchen 2

2nd Block Kitchen 3

2nd Block Kitchen 5

2nd Block Kitchen 6

Enjoy!

The Teacher Cooks

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46 Comments

Filed under Macaroni and cheese

46 responses to “Macaroni and Cheese and Voting

  1. Add some bacon and cooked onion for a tasty treat. Mushrooms also work well.

  2. There is nothing better than mac and cheese ! Days that I am not counting calories, Mac and Cheese is high on my list of foods I crave. Thanks for sharing a great recipe. Sometimes simple and basic turns out the best meal !

  3. I like the idea of adding some dry mustard to the mix…will do that the next time.
    Mac and cheese is a favorite with everyone in my family. I do use more than one kind of cheese (I know it’s expensive but everyone isn’t home all at one time very often) and always top it with buttered bread crumbs!

  4. Rachel

    1st period kitchen 5:)

  5. Kurt

    1st block kitchen 5

  6. Haylee W

    I’ve learned that you can’t substitute dry mustard with prepared mustard in this recipe.

  7. abby

    I learned that its okay to have the black pepper added to the macaroni when u cook it.

  8. Chelsea

    I learned that you actually use a type of mustard in this. I never would have guessed!

  9. Rachel S.

    I learned that you should run cold water over the macaroni to get the starch off.

  10. Alexis A

    I learned that white pepper makes your macaroni look better because it doesnt have little speckles of pepper in it, and it tastes just as good.

  11. Brittany- 1st block.

    I’ve learned that you use dry mustard instead of prepared mustard, and that you use white pepper instead of black. It tastes just as great! (:

  12. anna 1st

    i learned that mac n cheese homemade is way better than the box and is pretty simple to make as long as you have the time

  13. danielle

    i learned that you can put cheese over the top of the macaroni, which i usually dont like, but this was delicious!!

  14. tommie 1st

    I learned that not to consantly stir the noodle while they are boiling.

  15. Kamryn- 1st

    Yummy (: i love macaroni & cheese !

  16. Aaron

    I learned that heating your slurry in the microwave makes a much quicker roux.

  17. Marianna M.

    I learned that macaroni and cheese can fill you up in one serving.

  18. chasity wilson

    this was good and enjoyable

  19. Bethany 1st period

    I learned how to make fast but delicious mac & cheese :)

  20. Tatiana G-1st

    I didnt know that people added flour when making macaroni and cheese. Also i didnt know that using cold water when draining the noodles helped

  21. amy w

    I learned using cold water to rinse the noodles will help remove starch.

  22. tania

    i learned that you use dry mustard as one of the ingredients.

  23. I love that you show step by step on the M&C – and now guess what I want for breakfast?!

  24. Tori Bowen

    I really wish I knew where my group went wrong, we followed the recipe to a T but yet we messed up somehow along the way! I’m starting to think that maybe we didn’t stir well enough in the beginning mixing process.

  25. Andre

    White sauce makes the macaroni creamy

  26. Tyler "Oscar de la hoya" burnett

    I Learned that mixing ingredients thoroughly is vital to baking success.

  27. yvonne mcgregor

    this was new for me because i never of making mac n cheese with a white sauce. it turned pretty good. it gave me some ideas on what u can add to mac n cheese like bacon or make your own sauce.

  28. Lexxi J

    I loved this! I’m wanting more just looking at the pictures. I learned that white pepper has just the same effect as black pepper does.

  29. amber gillis

    i learned how to make white sauce it was my first time ever using it and i have to say it worked well with the mac-n-cheese :) yumm

  30. erika

    i wasn’t there that day either to make it but i learned how to make white sauce.

  31. Sarah J.

    I learned that if you run cold water over the noodles after you drain them the sauce will stick better and it will remove the starch.

  32. Levi Atkinson

    Macoroni and cheese, that was my first time making the dish. i did not know to add milk or to put cheese in your milk while stiring

  33. kim s

    i never knew you added ground mustard to mac and cheese

  34. RadianceM

    I learned that it takes 25 minutes to cook and that’s a long time (:

  35. Vaida R.

    I learned that using a white sauce in this dish makes the cheese taste much better and creamier!

  36. cynthia i

    i learned using a white sauce make your mac & cheese creamier & rich :)

  37. Sasha W.

    This mac n’ cheese recipe is so creamy & cheesy! It reminds me of KFC mac n’ cheese!

  38. finklestien

    kitchen 1 1st period

  39. I did this with my 9′s – just finished.
    First class was the demo with the roux and the possibilities. We made a very basic baked m&c; second class they made the basic m&c.
    Next class, they added everything in the first recipe I had put into parenthesis so they now had a gourmet version of the basic… a lot of ideas about how to doctor it up to bump of the flavour and texture. Third class, I had them do a white sauce with another kind of pasta – their choice – with cheese or not – their choice… they had to write their recipe and have it approved by me. I bought the groceries, they made it. Learned a lot. Tasted each others. Last class was a Design your own m&c – so, back to the first recipe idea – and each of my 6 kitchens now had to design their own – have the recipe approved – I bought the ingredients – and they made it and baked it. All were incredibly different from one another, and most were very good. Again, great learning experience. Now I am going to the lasagna noodle for a couple of classes and doing some simple vegetarian roll ups. Earlier in the year we did a Basic Tomato Sauce, then pizza dough and then put them together for pizza. Then learned how to cook pasta and used the sauce another day with spaghetti. Fun, isn’t it?

  40. First block kitchen 4; 2nd block kitchen 6

  41. Levi

    Macoroni is my favortie food and i love the taste of all the cheese this was made very well and was delicious to me.

  42. rachael

    This mac and cheese might have taken a little longer but it was worth the wait

  43. Summer

    i learned that to make white sauce that you must use a microwavable safe dish and that you have to stop the microwave every two minutes

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