Macaroni & Cheese From: A Taste of Memories, Comforting Foods From Our Past

Thomas Jefferson served Macaroni and Cheese at the White House in 1802. One of the first published recipes, from Jefferson’s cousin, Mary Randolph, appeared in “The Virginia Housewife” in 1824. Since that time this delicious and satisfying dish has been a comfort food favorite, becoming even more popular after Kraft Foods introduced the “Kraft Dinner” (macaroni and cheese mix in a box) in 1937.

There are hundreds of versions of this tasty combination, ranging from a simple layering of cooked macaroni and shredded cheese to a cheese sauce that is poured over cooked macaroni and baked. The recipe below is a classic version.

Classic Macaroni and Cheese

2 cups elbow macaroni
3 tablespoons butter or margarine
1/4 cup finely chopped onion (optional)
2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/8 teaspoon ground black pepper
2 cups milk
2 cups (8 ounces) shredded Cheddar Cheese, divided

Cook macaroni according to package directions; drain. In a medium saucepan, melt butter and cook onion until tender. Stir in flour, salt and pepper. Gradually add milk and cook, stirring constantly until thickened. Remove from heat and stir in 1-1/2 cups cheese until melted. Stir in macaroni and pour mixture into a greased 1-1/2 quart baking dish; top with remaining cheese. Bake at 350º for 30 minutes until golden brown. Makes 6 servings.

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