From the Mac and Cheese Files, No. 3


On today’s menu, it’s Mac and Two Cheeses with Caramelized Shallots from the December issue of Bon Appetit.  Also, broiled New York strip steaks (free registration required for access).

The BA mac and cheese was pretty simple, but added a couple of twists with the addition of goat cheese and caramelized shallots as a topping.  For me, the cheese sauce was a real epiphany – simmering half and half (with added hot sauce – ooh!) into which was stirred shredded cheddar cheese and flour.  The quickest and easiest cheese sauce I have EVER made.  So I’m late to the party, so what?  The goat cheese wasn’t a fave with everyone at the table, but most of us liked it just fine.  A note, though – make more caramelized shallots next time.  Put up with the tears, and make more caramelized shallots.  Just do it.


As for the steaks, I’ll have to say that I have long been less than satisfied with home oven broilers.  This method from Cook’s Country (a.k.a. American’s Test Kitchen), however, has me convinced.

The results are good (though I left out the compound butter), but it may take some fiddling with various oven-safe pans to come up with the combination that works for you and your chosen steaks.  The distance between the broiler element, gas or electric, and the steaks, is important.  I ended up putting the pan I used for broiling and baking rack on top of an inverted half sheet pan to get it right, but the end result was worth it.

Vegetables?  Oh, well, unless you count the shallots (and/or some mushrooms I sauteed on the side) as the vegetable, there was no veggie accompaniment for this dinner.  Vegetables get plenty of air time at our dinner table, so I don’t think they’ll be too upset about sitting this one out.


2 thoughts on “From the Mac and Cheese Files, No. 3

  1. This looks incredible! We’re going to a mac and cheese cookoff this weekend and I was planning on make the manchego & leek mac n cheese recipe from Food and Wine… but this sounds like it might be even better! We’re having a comfort food recipe contest at and would love to have you enter your favorite original recipe. The prize rocks!

  2. It’s really good. A couple of hints, though: I used a whole pint of half-and-half, almost double the amount in the recipe. I also increased the amount of flour to bind the sauce, though I intentionally left it a little thinner than it might have been otherwise. Give it a try!

    I’ll check out the contest. Unfortunately, none of these recipes is original, but thanks for stopping by!

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