Cheese Sauce for Old-Fashioned Macaroni Pie

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The cheese sauce is one of the most important parts of any old fashioned macaroni pie recipe. Make cheese sauce for old fashioned macaroni pie with help from the founder and owner of CapMac in this free video clip.

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Video Transcript

Hi, I’m Brian Arnoff, the chef and owner of CapMac. Today, we’re here making a classic Southern dish, macaroni pie. Here are all of my ingredients. We have a little butter, flour, we have some shredded cheddar cheese, little bit of Dijon mustard, we have a single egg here as a binder. Today, we’re going to be using some capatavi pasta, but if you would like, you could use elbows instead. And, we have something that we love here at CapMac, some crumbled cheeses. So, the first thing we’re going to do is add our butter to the pan. We want to allow that to start to melt down before we add our flour. This is going to create our brew for our cheese sauce, and is going to thicken our sauce. We’re going to allow the butter to melt here. We’re going to crank up the temperature a little bit, and give this a quick stir. While this is working, I have my milk here scalding in the back, just bringing it up to a simmer. It’s about three cups of milk for this recipe. Today, instead of using just a standard pan, we’re going to be baking in a pie shell. This is a pre-purchased, premade pie shell that we bought at the store. You could certainly make your own, but for convenience sake this is a great option. It’s going to bake up beautifully, brown on the edges, crispy on the bottom, and really give you something totally different than your traditional baked mac and cheese. So, it looks like our butter’s pretty much melted. We’re going to sprinkle in our flour. We’re going to move to a whisk here, and blend our flour with the butter. Now, we want to allow the flour and butter mixture here to cook for about a minute so that the raw flour flavor can really cook out. You can see the brew mixture is slowly just starting to darken slightly, it’s bubbling. We’re going to get in there and scrape it off the bottom, make sure we’re not burning around the edges. We’re looking pretty good. Next, we’re going to add our three cups of scalded milk slowly to the pan, and we’re going to whisk vigorously as this begins to come up to a simmer. You have to bring this up to about a rolling simmer to get your sauce thickened to the proper consistency. You really want to whisk this quite a bit to make sure you avoid getting any lumps, also scraping the bottom as necessary. As you can see, the sauce is just beginning to thicken. We’re going to allow this to thicken for about another minute, and then we’re going to add our part-cooked pasta. As you can see, the béchamel is now thickened beautifully. We’re going to just season it a little bit here with some salt and fresh cracked black pepper. It’s always important to season the base of your mac and cheese before you add your cheese. That way, you can check your flavor profile. I always keep some spoons handy for a quick taste. Tastes great. Going to add our part-cooked pasta. And also, as a little seasoning here, we want to add a little bit of Dijon mustard. This is going to add a little tang to the background of the mac and cheese, and it also actually thickens the mac and cheese slightly. As you can see, the sauce is really coating the pasta beautifully here. We’re going to add our cheeses in stages, making sure that, you know, one stage melts in before the next. We’re also going to reserve a little bit of cheese for our topping. We want to have that beautifully melted crunchy topping on this macaroni and cheese pie. So, you can see the first stage has melted in pretty good. We’re going to add about half of this remaining cheese, reserving about a half a cup of shredded cheese for the top. Finally, our egg. You want to just break the yolk up a little bit before you add it to your mac and cheese. This is going to be our binder and help hold the mac and cheese together as it bakes in the oven. We’re going to turn the heat off now. We have our premade pie shell, and you can just see how beautifully and gooey this is. We’re going to just dump this. This is probably the easiest way. You could spoon it in, but, you know, it’s a little more fun this way. You want to tamp that down and make sure that you really spread it out evenly, hopefully you’re not overflowing, but if you are, we won’t tell anybody. We have our reserve shredded cheese for the top, and last but not least, Cheez-Its. This is something that we do on our food truck at CapMac. It really adds something different to your mac and cheese, it really makes it special, and people will be surprised when you tell them that it’s Cheez-Its on top of your macaroni pie. We’re going to pop this in the oven at 350 degrees for about 25 minutes, and allow it to bake until it’s golden on top and everything’s bubbly and delicious. So, it’s been about 25 minutes our macaroni pie has been in the oven. We’re going to dig in here and see how it looks. You want to be very careful when you’re taking this pie out of the oven. You can see it’s browned up beautifully around the edges and on the top the Cheez-Its have formed a really nice crust. And, this is going to be a delicious pie. We recommend that you allow this to sit for five to 10 minutes to cool before slicing, because otherwise it won’t hold together. This has been macaroni and cheese pie, and I’m Brian Arnoff, thank you so much for watching.

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