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 Post subject: Kenji's 3-ingredient Mac and Cheese
PostPosted: Fri Jan 20, 2017 6:59 pm 
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Joined: Thu Dec 18, 2008 1:03 am
Posts: 5129
Location: Portland, OR
So, when I was in college, we bought an entire flat of generic mac&cheese in a box from some discount store for my off-campus housing. So I ate a lot of mac & cheese from a box. Of course, I ended up adding lots of stuff to it ... milk, some real cheese, veggies, spices ... to the point where I doubt I was saving any money. And later moved on to "maccheroni al forno" a fancier, tasty casserole version.

But the gooey Kraft-style mac&cheese does still have some serious appeal. As does getting a main course done in less than 15 minutes using one pot. Kenji delivers:

http://www.seriouseats.com/2017/01/the- ... heese.html

Mind you, it's actually five ingredients (salt and water), but that's still damn simple.

This is a slightly upscaled version of Kraft, with real cheese and a lower salt content. It's very rich, so you don't need as much as you might think, and since it's a ratio formula (equal parts cheese, pasta, and evaportated milk) you can scale it up or down within reason. A couple of tips if you make this:

* Use a non-stick pot with a heavy bottom. The dairy tends to stick and scortch on the bottom of the pot.

* Scoop out any leftovers before they are cold, as it also sets rather firmly.

* Smoked cheddar makes for a really nice flavor.

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 Post subject: Re: Kenji's 3-ingredient Mac and Cheese
PostPosted: Sat Jan 21, 2017 8:38 am 
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Joined: Sun Oct 21, 2012 8:51 am
Posts: 660
Location: W. Montana
I saw this recipe but didn't think twice about it but i'm glad to know that it's that good.
I grew up on Kraft mac & cheese like you all, in fact, I remember when my brother was a Boyscout and they had to buy food for a campout only spending a very small amount.
He got the Kraft stuff for 7 cents a box!
Recently, though, I've fallen in love with:

Roasted Cauliflower Mac and Cheese

6 cups small cauliflower florets
2 tsp olive oil
1/4 tsp salt
2 cups dried elbow macaroni or cavatappi pasta
1 Tbs olive oil
3/4 cup finely chopped onion
2 cloves garlic, minced
2 1/2 cups fat-free milk
2 Tbs all-purpose flour
1/2 tsp salt
2 oz reduced-fat cream cheese (Neufchatel), cut up
1 1/2 cups shredded reduced-fat sharp cheddar cheese (6 ounces)
1 cup soft bread crumbs
1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese
1/2 tsp snipped fresh thyme
1 tsp olive oil

Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. Line a 15x10-inch baking pan with parchment paper. Place cauliflower in prepared baking pan. Drizzle with 2 teaspoons oil and sprinkle with 1/4 teaspoon salt; toss to coat. Roast 20 minutes or until tender and browned. Remove from oven. Reduce oven temperature to 350 degrees F.

Meanwhile, in a large saucepan cook macaroni according to package directions; drain. Rinse with cold water; drain again. Return macaroni to saucepan.

For cheese sauce, in a large nonstick skillet heat 1 tablespoon oil over medium heat. Add onion; cook 3 minutes or until tender, stirring occasionally. Add garlic; cook and stir 30 seconds. In a medium bowl whisk together the next three ingredients (through 1/2 teaspoon salt) until smooth; gradually stir into onion mixture. Cook and stir until slightly thickened and bubbly. Reduce heat to low. Stir in cream cheese until melted. Remove from heat. Gradually add cheddar cheese, stirring just until melted.

Add cauliflower and cheese sauce to cooked macaroni; stir gently to combine. Transfer mixture to a 3-quart rectangular baking dish. In a small bowl combine the next three ingredients (through thyme). Drizzle with 1 teaspoon oil; toss to coat. Sprinkle crumb mixture over macaroni mixture. Bake 25 to 30 minutes or until heated through and crumbs are light brown.

Servings: 8


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 Post subject: Re: Kenji's 3-ingredient Mac and Cheese
PostPosted: Mon Feb 13, 2017 10:37 am 
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Joined: Thu Dec 18, 2008 7:18 pm
Posts: 1244
I was skeptical about this because I didn't like CI's mac and cheese with evaporated milk, but I really liked it. Super simple, excellent taste. Even though I sometimes find Kenji a bit smug, he hits a lot of home runs.


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 Post subject: Re: Kenji's 3-ingredient Mac and Cheese
PostPosted: Mon Feb 13, 2017 10:39 am 
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Joined: Tue Dec 23, 2008 8:18 pm
Posts: 562
Location: Winchester, MA
I also tried it and liked it - certainly very creamy and easy.

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 Post subject: Re: Kenji's 3-ingredient Mac and Cheese
PostPosted: Mon Feb 13, 2017 3:19 pm 
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Joined: Fri Dec 19, 2008 10:45 pm
Posts: 1531
Location: Ottawa, ON
Darcie wrote:
Even though I sometimes find Kenji a bit smug, he hits a lot of home runs.


I think it isn't smugness, it is just being a New Yorker (or at least spending too much time there) :)


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 Post subject: Re: Kenji's 3-ingredient Mac and Cheese
PostPosted: Tue Feb 14, 2017 3:05 pm 
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Joined: Sat Mar 19, 2011 10:09 am
Posts: 351
Location: Newton, MA
FWIW, CI published a simple mac/cheese sans b├ęchamel. Instead with milk, american & cheddar cheeses, panko bread crumbs and very little water. They claim it's 20 mins.....


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 Post subject: Re: Kenji's 3-ingredient Mac and Cheese
PostPosted: Tue Feb 14, 2017 8:02 pm 
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Joined: Fri Dec 19, 2008 10:45 pm
Posts: 1531
Location: Ottawa, ON
I made delia's souffle'd mac and cheese the other day. Much more then 3 ingredients (3 cheeses alone...), a fair bit more then 20 min, but oh so delicious.


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