Savoury

The Ultimate Macaroni and Cheese

This is one recipe you need to keep for a rainy day! The unbeatable cheesy sauce topped with plum tomatoes makes the ultimate comfort food. A recipe taught to me by my mother who would make this at least twice a week, the family favourite, served with frankfurters and lots (and i mean lots) of tomato puree squeezed on top!

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The recipe is super simple and can be used as a base for other recipes so it is a great one to learn and practice! I have started back at uni and it’s my final year, so it’s ben super busy and stressful and this is one of my favourites to make after a long day to remind me of home and forgot all the assignments due and I swear it has a power to make me click on Netflix..

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The macaroni is boiled in chicken stock (my greek roots coming out) before being mixed in with the white cheesy sauce and cooked in the oven for the sauce to thicken. Then fresh plum tomatoes (and extra cheese) is sprinkled on top before being grilled to get a crunchy topping! Soooooo yummmmyyyy…

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I dare you to make this for dinner one day and see if there’s any leftovers! It has a slight kick from the cayenne pepper which you can adapt to your own tastes, but the spice is amazing! you think it wouldn’t go (oh it does)
and the freshness of the grilled plum tomatoes on top is divine. Did someone say veganuary? Because I say cheeseuary so get making this now!

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I serve mine with a squeeze of tomato puree on top. I cannot tell you why, it’s just what my mum did so we all started doing it and since then I never turned back. It just adds a little pizza-tasting twist and it’s amazing if you want to give it a try but it is optional and tastes amazing without too!

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The weather is just awful at the moment. It’s freezing cold and the next minute I’m sweating with the ten layers I’ve put on. I long for summer sun and holidays, but this mac & cheese is the only thing helping me through these cold, wet horrible days. It puts a smile on my face and hopefully it will put one on yours too!

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I hope you enjoy this! It is probably my signature dish and the first savoury dish to make its way onto the blog! If you try this, let me know how you get on!


Ingredients

  • 1 Tbsp Butter
  • 4-5 Tbsp Plain Flour
  • 400ml Milk
  • 350g Extra Mature Chedder
  • 300g Macaroni
  • 2 Chicken Stock Cubes
  • 2 tsp Salt
  • 3 tsp Ground Black Pepper
  • 1 tsp Cayenne Pepper
  • Small Handful of Plum Tomatoes
  • 1 Tube of Tomato Puree

Directions

  1. Place a large pan over medium heat and melt the butter.
  2. Add in the flour a tbsp at a time, mixing vigorously to cook out the flour until it clumps together like a dough.
  3. Slowly add in the milk, a little bit at a time, stirring consistently to avoid lumps in the mixture.
  4. Continue to stir the mixture for 5-10 minutes frequently until it has thickened slightly.
  5. Add in the cheese, leaving some to use for the topping later and all the spices.
  6. In another large pan, boil the water (enough for the pasta) with the chicken stock cubes in and add the macaroni. Cook for around 5 mins leaving the macaroni al dente. While the pasta is cooking, place an oven-proof dish into the oven at 180///// to pre heat.
  7. 7.Mix the part-cooked macaroni into the sauce and transfer into your pre heated oven dish. Place the lid on top and cook in the oven for a further 10-15 minutes until the macaroni is cooked completely.
  8. Remove the macaroni from the oven and sprinkle over the remaining cheese and plum tomatoes. Place under a piping hot grill until golden brown and crispy.
  9. Once plated, squeeze over a drizzle of tomato puree and serve with a light salad, frankfurters and garlic bread (or just by itself as it’s that good).

  • Chicken stock gives the macaroni more flavour and is crucial. Vegetable stock can be used if there are vegetarians.
  • If you want a pseedier process, omit the oven cooking and boil macaroni for 10-12 minutes, stir into the sauce and go straight for the grill. The cooking in the oven adds more flavour but is not essential.
  • Tomato puree is optional, but adds a great flavour and is worth trying.
  • Add more or less cayenne pepper depending on how spicy you like your food. 1 tsp is a mild kick and I tend to go for 2-3 as I like mine quite spicy.

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