The next time you want to feast on some cheesy, gooey goodness, remember eating mac and cheese is part of our national heritage — It’s downright patriotic. Legend has it that mac and cheese came to the United Sates courtesy of Thomas Jefferson, who became enamored with the pasta dish while visiting France. It was Jefferson who brought home noodle recipes and a pasta machine to the States, since these things were unavailable in the Colonies at the time. He loved the dish so much, he even served it at a state dinner in 1802.
Flash forward a few decades. Kraft Foods marketed its boxed macaroni and cheese in 1937 during the throes of the Great Depression. One box could serve a family of four for just 19 cents. The company sold 8 million boxes that year. During the war, when fresh meat and produce were in short supply, the boxed mac and cheese only grew in popularity.
Today, mac and cheese often gets a fancy twist with home cooked and celebs alike adding unique ingredients like truffle oil and bacon, making it worthy of fine dining establishments. Just in time for National Mac and Cheese day, here how’s five of your favorite chefs whip up everyone’s favorite comfort food.
Ina adds a grown-up twist to your favorite childhood mac and cheese. She whips up a white sauce with a hefty dose of seasoning and adds freshly shredded gruyere and cheddar for a melty cheese sauce, and then tops it with tomatoes and bread crumbs for a perfect party dish.
Rachel Ray uses all the good stuff for her ultimate mac and cheese — bacon, truffle oil, garlic and onions. Gruyere and sharp white cheddar make up the cheese sauce before she bakes it in the oven with grated Parmesan. Top it will chopped chives.
The former Top Chef contender starts with some brown butter, cream, and roasted garlic before adding a whopping five cheeses! Wisconsin cheddar, Grana Padano, blue cheese (for kick), montasio, and Fontina. Um.. this one looks ah-mazing.
Only Martha tried out 35 different recipes of mac and cheese (we want that job!) to come up with her very best rendition she brings you here. A combo cheddar and gruyere cheese over macaroni is her secret.
Paula finds a way to make mac and cheese in true Paula southern by adding plenty of butter, her secret ingredient, sour cream, and the most deliciously obscene amount of cheese you’ve ever seen.
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