There must be something in the air...as the snow fell on Wednesday, I felt an overwhelming urge to make macaroni cheese. And today Fiona, over at The Cheeselover, (she's author of the very delicious book The Cheese Course) has been blogging and twittering about this fantastic comfort blanket of a supper. Fiona's running a competition and this doesn't quite count as an entry, so I'll have to return to it before mid-Jan.
My recipe, which was based on my mum's (which undoubtedly came from Good Housekeeping), underwent a spring clean last year after I'd leafed through Angela Nilsen's excellent Ultimate Recipe Book.
Angela's excellent version has influenced mine in a few ways - make the bechemal sauce a bit slack so that once the macaroni goes in, the whole thing doesn't seize up; use a cheese mix of half chedder and half gruyere to ensure maximum cheesiness;and cheesy crumbs! Angela likes a tomato topping and so do I: not to everyone's taste, especially those to whom tomatoes are the devil's work.
I discovered I had no chedder, so my cheese was a third Lancashire and two thirds Gruyere. The final dish goes into an oven for around 20 mins, then under the grill to brown off the crumbs. Last night I was starving so didn't wait for the full toasting of the crumbs.