ORIGINAL SIDES: MACARONI AND CHEESE

ORIGINAL SIDES: MACARONI AND CHEESE Friday, December 23, 2011

Every kid loves it. And chances are, unless you’re dietary habits prohibit you from eating it (it’s pretty much made from wheat and dairy) the child in you loves it, too.

So let us praise then, ourselves, because we have long outgrown childish tastes. It’s not that we were stupid, or that children, in general, are stupid, but late’s face it, they (as did we when we were their age) love macaroni and cheese, so long as it meets their rather suspect and unsophisticated expectations. In other words, they (we) love(d) it, so long as it comes (came) from a box.

When we’re young and everything in the world is new, we tend to stick to static things.

Fortunately, our taste buds grow with us the older we get. The palate widens and sheds the stubborn partisanship of its youth.

Now, there are countless ways to make a proper macaroni and cheese casserole, and its diverse recipes are very old, and very European, too. Nonetheless, Americans place a proper mac high atop their list of nostalgic comfort foods.

The Original’s Mac ‘n’ Cheese is derived from the continental European style, and takes the form of a soufflé. Made with elbow macaroni and Tillamook cheddar cheese, our soufflé is comprised of eggs, onion, bread crumbs, salt and butter. Once is sets, which we top with parmesan cheese and pop it in the oven.

And, like magic (a good macaroni and cheese is magical, isn’t it?), the flavors blend and bind themselves to one another the way a good mac should.

But, to jazz it up just a little, we dollop it with a small spoonful of our housemade bacon-tomato ketchup (which we make with onions, apple cider vinegar, dry mustard, salt, pepper, a pinch of cinnamon, a dash of hot sauce and, as the name implies, tomatoes and bacon).