Let me just say that if you only make one mac and cheese in your lifetime this should be the one. My gosh! I just had to make it after reading all the comments after this was written. What about Food 52? They shouted from the rooftop about it, too. So I’m right up there with the rest of them and I have to say that it is the best macaroni and cheese that I have had. Martha knows her mac and cheese that’s for sure. It has just the right amount of bechamel sauce to go with the pasta and I love the White Cheddar and Gruyère Cheese. I will have to admit skepticism about the nutmeg, but it went in the sauce . Perfection! So it’s your turn to let Martha’s Perfect Macaroni and Cheese be the hit at your house. It was at mine.
Last week in class we made macaroni and cheese using this recipe which I have used for years. It is quick and easy. High school students can handle it pretty well, but even so the sauce can be a bit tricky to the novice cook. It makes for an easy clean up, too. Martha’s recipe is a bit more detailed and I might add that I had a few more dishes and utensils to clean, but well worth the extra time and the cheeses are a little pricey. Her original recipe makes enough for a small army. I halved the recipe with no problem. So here it is Perfect Macaroni and Cheese which is said to be the most popular recipe from Martha. When you put this in your mouth you’ll know why – Perfection!
Here are the step-by-step photos:
Now let’s get it started:
Now it’s ready for the oven.
This is so good!
Macaroni and Cheese by Martha Stewart – Living 1999
Yield: 6 servings
- 3 slices of white bread, crust removed, torn into 1/4 – 1/2 in. pieces
- 4 tablespoons unsalted butter, divided
- 2 3/4 cups milk
- 1/4 cup all-purpose flour
- 1 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1/8 teaspoon nutmeg
- 1/8 teaspoon black pepper
- 1/8 teaspoon cayenne pepper
- 2 1/4 cups ( about 9 ounces) grated sharp white cheddar cheese, divided
- 1 cup (about 4 ounces) grated Gruyère cheese, divided
- 8 ounces elbow macaroni
- Heat oven to 375 degrees.
- Butter 1 1/2 quart dish.
- Place bread in a medium bowl.
- Melt 1 tablespoon butter and pour over bread. Toss and set aside.
- In a medium saucepan heat milk over medium heat.
- Melt remaining 3 tablespoons butter in a high-sided skillet over medium heat.
- When butter bubbles, add flour. Cook, stirring, 1 minute.
- Slowly pour hot milk into flour mixture while whisking. Continue to cook until the mixture bubbles and becomes thick.
- Remove from the heat. Stir in salt, nutmeg, black pepper, cayenne pepper, cayenne pepper, 1 1/4 cups cheddar and 1/2 cup Gruyère cheese. Set aside.
- Cook pasta according to directions, until outside of pasta is cooked and the inside is underdone. I cooked mine about 8 minutes. It will vary by the brand used.
- Pour macaroni in a colander and rinse under cold water.
- Stir macaroni into the sauce.
- Pour the mixture into a buttered dish. Sprinkle with remaining cheese.
- Top with buttered bread.
- Bake until browned on top, about 30 minutes.