The History of Mac and Cheese, According to Elwin

It's the middle of winter and hot comfort food is still in demand. A traditional favorite, mac and cheese, has a long history of filling bellies and warming spirits around the world. 

Chef Elwin Greenwald of Elwin & Company in Berkley stooped by the Fox2 News Studios Saturday morning to discuss the iconic dish's history, and to offer a few personal twists on the traditional meal. Watch the video above, follow these recipes, and click here for more information. 

Greenwald announced that nyone that mentions Fox 2 News personalities Charlie Langdon, Maurielle Lue or Jessica Star will receive an extra 10 percent off their purchase today. 

  • 1 Qt half & half (heated, then simmered) Heavy bottom sauce pot
  • 6 oz unsalted butter (divided) Wire whisk
  • 8 oz all purpose flour Wooden spoon 
  • 1 TSP Kosher or sea salt Box grated with 4 sides
  • ½ TSP  black pepper Assorted mixing bowls, measuring cups & spoons
  • ¼ TSP ground nutmeg Rubber spatula 
  • ¼ TSP dry mustard Large soup ladle
  • 1 TSP freshly chopped parsley Copper or white ceramic baking dish
  • ½ TSP finely grated lemon zest
  • 1 box elbow macaroni (1lb) cooked al dente
  • ½ C bread crumbs or Corn Flake crumbs
  • ¼ C freshly grated parmesan cheese
  • ½ C each imported Cheddar & Swiss cheese
  • ½ C each additional items of your choice;
  • diced crisp bacon & blue cheese
  • diced cooked shrimp and or lobster
  • diced artichokes & sun dried tomatoes
  • diced smoked salmon & fresh dill
  1. In the heavy bottom sauce pot melt 4oz of the butter.  All at once add the flour and stir with the wooden spoon until well combined.  
  2. Using the large soup ladle add about 1/3 of the hot half & half whisking constantly until smooth.  Repeat this process until all the half & half is used.  Add the salt, pepper, nutmeg, mustard, lemon zest, parsley and stir well.
  3. Simmer the Bechamel Sauce until it thickens and coats the back of the wooden spoon.  Pass the rubber spatula across the bottom and sides of the pot to inhibit burning or clumping. Remove from the heat. Let the sauce reach room temperature before using.
  4. In a large mixing bowl place the cooked macaroni plus the cheddar and Swiss cheese.  
  5. Add the cooled Bechamel/White Sauce and combine with the macaroni and cheeses. 
  6. Add the additional ingredients creating the Macaroni & Cheese of your choice.  You can make individual "Pots d'Macaroni & Fromage " in ramekins or one large one in the copper or ceramic dish.
  7. Top with the bread or cereal crumbs, parmesan cheese. Dot the top with the remaining butter and bake uncovered in a 325 degree oven until top is golden and the center is bubbling.