Spiced macaroni cheese is the best macaroni cheese!

Macaroni cheese is wonderful. It’s just the best comfort food in the world. My mum used to make it for me a lot when I was younger, always eaten with a “splade” which since getting married I’ve discovered is not commonly found in kitchens outside of my family 🙂

As it’s Thanksgiving tomorrow, we’re having a Thanksgiving type meal this evening. We’re not American but we have some American friends so figured why not?

I was commissioned to make two large dishes of macaroni cheese (or mac and cheese to quote to Americans). I thought why not make one dish normal and one spiced. In my opinion, once you’ve gone spiced, you’ll never go back!

It’s pretty easy to make, especially if you’re already au fait with the regular macaroni cheese recipe.

Make it, eat it, love it!

Ingredients: (serves 4)

225g pasta (I use the shell type, the sauce sits nicely inside!)

Chunk of butter (A good tablespoon)

Heaped tablespoon of plain flour

500ml milk (full fat or semi skimmed)

150g extra strong mature cheddar, grated

1/4 teaspoon Cayenne chili pepper

1/4 teaspoon paprika


First, put the pasta on to boil in a large saucepan. Add the butter to the pan and melt it over a medium heat. Add the tablespoon of flour and stir. There shouldn’t be any melted butter visible, if there is, sprinkle a little more flour in and stir until its mixed well.

Add the milk a little at a time (admittedly, I tend to slosh it in haphazardly and hope for the best but adding it slowly is probably much more sensible). The sauce should start to thicken. When it is a good thick consistency, stir in the grated cheese. Depending on how strong you like the sauce, taste it at this point and add more cheese if you fancy.

Once the cheese has melted in, add the paprika and Cayenne chili pepper to the sauce and stir in thoroughly. It will turn the sauce ever so slightly red. At this point if you want to taste it again, go ahead! Add more spices if you want to.

Drain the pasta and put in back into the pan. Add the sauce on top of the pasta and stir through.

At this point, many people put it into an oven proof dish, sprinkle with cheese and bake but I don’t bother. Go ahead if you’re into that though, don’t let me stop you!

I pour mine into pasta dishes, dust a little paprika over the top and serve straight away (with a splade, obvs*).

All that’s left to do is enjoy the amazing dish you just made! Make it, eat it, love it!



*For those of you that are intrigued by splades, you can find them here. (apparently they’re splayds, not splades. Who knew?)


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