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Stefanie
05-03-2011, 06:03 PM
Like I said, comfort foods are often the exception for so many of us. I think I will still be enjoying the occasional box of Kraft Dinner until I die - I literally grew up on the stuff, and much as I like making macaroni and cheese from scratch, it's never even close to the bright orange goodness I've always loved.

I have tried making my own macaroni and cheese several times--using different recipes--and I still can't get it to taste as good as Kraft or Velveeta shells and cheese. And of course I know that they are made with preservatives, fake cheese, etc., but it's one guilty pleasure I enjoy occasionally. Perhaps I should have used whole milk instead of 2% when making my own??? Does whole milk add to the creaminess?

Habs
05-03-2011, 06:29 PM
I have tried making my own macaroni and cheese several times--using different recipes--and I still can't get it to taste as good as Kraft or Velveeta shells and cheese. And of course I know that they are made with preservatives, fake cheese, etc., but it's one guilty pleasure I enjoy occasionally. Perhaps I should have used whole milk instead of 2% when making my own??? Does whole milk add to the creaminess?

My grandmother made the world's best mac & cheese. We've been trying for years (she died in 2003) to recreate it but it never turns out quite right.
And IIRC, she used 2% milk with a splash of cream for goodness (her words :lol: ).

She boiled and drained the macaroni, and then added a few spoons of flour and shredded old cheddar by the handfuls. Once it was mixed well, she put it in a greased casserole dish, poured the milk & cream over it (until you can see it rising up to the top of the noodles) covered it with more cheese, put the lid on it and baked it for an hour. :swoon:

skaternum
05-03-2011, 06:41 PM
I have tried making my own macaroni and cheese several times--using different recipes--and I still can't get it to taste as good as Kraft or Velveeta shells and cheese.Maybe the problem is that you're trying to get it to taste "like" or "as good as" the packaged stuff. I really see them as 2 completely different foods. It's like trying to make a steak taste like a hamburger. Never gonna happen. Appreciate the packaged day-glo flourescent orange stuff for its unique flavor & texture, and appreciate the gourmet homemade stuff for its real cheese flavor. :lol:

Jenny
05-03-2011, 06:56 PM
In the not-Kraft-but-entirely-awesome category:

A sophisticated version that you can serve to company or enjoy yourselves:

Double Dutch Mac and Cheese with Chard (http://www.bonappetit.com/recipes/2009/05/double_dutch_mac_and_cheese_with_chard)

And a French version from Balthazar restaurant in New York:

Baked Macaroni Gratin (http://leitesculinaria.com/1703/recipes-macaroni-and-cheese.html)

Ajax
05-03-2011, 09:23 PM
I've only read the last couple of pages and the talk of homemade Mayo has me curious - recipes? (I don't like sweet Mayo)

Angelskates, do you have an immersion blender or a food processor? If so homemade mayo is very easy, if not you'll be in for a good long bit of whisking by hand which I don't recommend.

Assuming you proceed with an immersion blender, you need:

1 egg (fresher the better)
1 cup oil (canola is preferred as it's flavorless and cheap but for stronger-tasting mayos you can use olive oil, coconut oil or nut oils)
1 tbsp fresh lemon juice or white vinegar
1 tsp Dijon mustard
1/2 tsp salt

The key to homemado mayo is that ALL the ingredients have to be at room temperature. I can't stress this enough. I recently forgot to take the mustard out of the fridge in advance. The mayo never emulsified and I ended up with eggy oil soup :(

If you're using an immersion blender, crack the egg into a tall glass or beaker and stir in the lemon juice. Let sit for a couple minutes, that way the lemon juice can kill any potential bacteria in the egg. Then stir in the mustard and top slowly with the oil. Stick your immersion blender in all the way to the bottom, turn it on. In a few seconds you'll see it emulsify and mayo will start to make its way up the sides of the cup. When this starts happening, slowly draw the running blender up until all the oil is incorporated.

If using a food processor, process the egg, mustard and lemon juice for a few seconds, then add the oil, drop by drop at first, while the processor is running.

Jenny
05-03-2011, 09:30 PM
Angelskates, do you have an immersion blender or a food processor?

You can also use a stand mixer with the whisk attachment if you prefer.

BigB08822
05-04-2011, 01:16 AM
Does anyone else find it very curious that homemade mayo includes mustard?? Please don't tell me that mustard includes mayo as an ingredient or we will have to have a philosophical discussion on what came first, mayo or mustard!? :eek:

Angelskates
05-04-2011, 07:17 AM
I have an electric hand mixer and a blender. And another small electric whiz thing. I've never heard of an immersion blender :shuffle:

Rex
05-04-2011, 02:40 PM
Does anyone else find it very curious that homemade mayo includes mustard?? Please don't tell me that mustard includes mayo as an ingredient or we will have to have a philosophical discussion on what came first, mayo or mustard!? :eek:

Mustard made with mayo? No, but this article (http://www.theatlantic.com/life/archive/2010/10/making-homemade-mustard-easier-than-you-think/64871/)(which also has a link to a homemade mustard recipe) is very interesting.

Jenny
05-04-2011, 02:50 PM
Mustard made with mayo? No, but this article (http://www.theatlantic.com/life/archive/2010/10/making-homemade-mustard-easier-than-you-think/64871/)(which also has a link to a homemade mustard recipe) is very interesting.

Thank you for sharing this - fascinating article, and the guy's blog is also very interesting.

:)

Rex
05-04-2011, 03:43 PM
Thank you for sharing this - fascinating article, and the guy's blog is also very interesting.

:)

:) You're welcome.
This is something I'll definitely try this spring - I love mustard. The Italian versions, with added fruit, sound particularly intriguing.

Jenny
05-04-2011, 04:13 PM
The thing I want to get into this year is proper preserving techniques - jams and preserves and all that. Every year I dry chilies and some herbs from our garden for the winter, but I'd like to do more.

Ajax
05-04-2011, 06:09 PM
Does anyone else find it very curious that homemade mayo includes mustard?? Please don't tell me that mustard includes mayo as an ingredient or we will have to have a philosophical discussion on what came first, mayo or mustard!? :eek:

Mustard helps emulsions along which is why it's included I think. Most proper vinaigrettes also include mustard to create a thicker, well-emulsified dressing.

BigB08822
08-31-2011, 06:28 PM
Does anyone ever make stuffed bell peppers? We are doing that tonight with some leftover spaghetti but I don't know how to get the bell peppers softer. They are always well heated but still a little too raw, I'd prefer the bell pepper to cook some more. Do I just need to leave them in longer or should I precook the bell pepper before stuffing and putting in the oven?

Our spaghetti sauce is delicious, by the way! We bought a cheap can and cooked down an entire eggplant and onion and some mushrooms. It is a delicious and chunky sauce. I threw in a couple of chicken breasts last night and tonight for the bell pepper I'm going to brown some beef. We have been tearing up the local produce stand lately.

Rex
08-31-2011, 07:02 PM
^^^Are you parboiling them first?^^^I've always parboiled them.