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Sunday, February 12, 2012

Weekend Cooking: Tatiana's Macaroni and Cheese

I love macaroni and cheese and have always enjoyed trying out different recipes to see what combinations of cheese or add ins make the best gourmet mac and cheese. This recipe comes from Tatiana's Table by Paullina Simons.

I loved the vignette that went along with this recipe.  Tatiana is trying to help her son to be "American" and she decides that they are not eating American foods.  So she tries out a recipe for Mac and Cheese - I ask, what could be more American, except maybe hamburgers?  She also likes to try out differed add ins - like me!

Tatiana's Macaroni and Cheese
Serves 6-8

1 lb elbow macaroni, cooked
5 cups milk
1 large onion, peeled and left whole
5 Tbsp. butter
5 Tbsp. flour
1 lb. extra sharp cheddar
8 oz. Swiss or Gruyere cheese
1 lb. mozzarella
1 tsp. salt
Pepper to taste
1/2 tsp. paprika
1/4 tsp. cayenne pepper

Optional: Bacon, cooked crisp and chopped or thick ham, small cubed and lightly fried

1) Preheat oven to 350 F degrees.  Grease a rectangular oven safe 9x13 casserole dish.  Shred all cheese and set aside.
2) In a medium saucepan heat milk and onion until bubbles just form around the edge of the pan.  Turn off heat and let onion infuse into the milk.
3) Meanwhile, melt butter in a 5 qt. saucepan on medium heat.  Add flour and cook, stirring gently for 3-4 minutes.  Discard the onion and slowly add the milk to the roux paste, stirring constantly.  Heat until milk mixture thickens and starts to bubble slightly.  Add salt, pepper, paprika, and cayenne.  Remove from heat and add cooked macaroni.  Add half the cheddar, half the Swiss, and half the mozzarella cheeses and mix.
4) Spread into the prepared casserole.  Sprinkle with the remaining cheeses and bake for 30 minutes until cheese is bubbling.

This is one of the better mac and cheese recipes I have tried recently.  I went with adding in bacon - because I too believe that everything can be made better with bacon - and we didn't have any ham in the house.  I also chose Swiss cheese instead of Gruyere since we had made one with Gruyere recently.  The outcome was a very creamy, cheesy dish.  I have had problems before where it isn't creamy enough, but this one was perfect.  My boyfriend gave it the green light too.  The cheese on top gave it a little bit of a crisp crust...so good!  

I don't think that infusing the milk with the onion added much in the way of taste.  You really didn't have any taste of onion.  I think I would probably finely dice the onion next time.  Also, I would add more cayenne, maybe 1/2 tsp total - you couldn't taste that either.

Overall a very good dish.  Stay tuned next week...we make dessert!

Weekend Cooking is hosted by Beth Fish Reads. Any post remotely related to cooking can participate.

Copyright © 2012 by The Maiden’s Court


  1. You just can't beat a good macaroni and cheese, and this looks great.

  2. Love mac and cheese and am always looking for a good recipe. Thanks Heather!

  3. I was wondering about the effect of infusing the onion. Good to know my instincts were right. But I do like the sound of this recipe. I'll have to give it a go.

    1. I had a feeling that it wasn't going to make much of a difference, but I thought I would try it out.


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