Ah, Mac and Cheese (see above). The comfort food of all comfort foods. To me the sight and smell of this immediately causes my mouth to water – definitely one of my guilty pleasures.
First of All, I Have To Get This Off My Chest
I don’t consider the packaged varieties of mac and cheese to truly be mac and cheese at all. Sure, the final product has macaroni, milk, and butter. It’s 75% there, but it’s that mystery package of who knows what that I take issue with.
My Love/Hate Relationship
I admit to having a bit of a love/hate relationship with the product in the blue box. When I was a single dad, it was an easy meal, and it was popular with my kids. But I felt it was an unhealthy culinary copout, and each gooey serving screamed of bad parenting. And now any time I hear someone call any of these commercial imposters mac and cheese, I’m silently judging them.
Our “Real” Mac and Cheese Quest
We wanted a recipe that could produce real mac and cheese. We began our quest to come up with a recipe to put the blue box to shame.
After searching for recipes on line and in cookbooks, we tested many of our finds. We devised composite recipes from many, and with several we had multiple iterations. And we gained weight. But we never found the recipe that could come close to the macaroni and cheese that I loved. And that mac and cheese was the featured selection in the cafeteria of our favorite department store of the 1960s.
We changed our online tactics, and we actually found the recipe. It was close to several of the recipes we had already tried, but we uncovered their secret ingredient. Our policy is not to mention product names, but the company who makes the secret ingredient it rhymes with “draft.” It comes in 5 oz. jars with a blue lids, and it’s labeled O– E—— Spread. We have changed the recipe a bit, but to see our recipe, click on Macaroni and Cheese. For the recipe scroll down through the narrative and click on the print button.
Note: To be fair I’m going to direct you to a site that rates the stovetop products. Many other commercial products have been added to our choices. So as not to keep you in suspense, the blue box won and evidently is still considered the best.