Mac’n Cheese, Czech Style

Hey y’all.

So, continuing my efforts to cook in the Czech Republic, tonight I decided to try and make homemade mac’n cheese.

Problems:

  • Cheddar cheese is hard to find, and expensive
  • Cream is also difficult to find
  • I am poor

So! For tonight, I had to get a little experimental. In lieu of cheddar cheese I went with the classic (and cheap) Edam (or Eidam as they spell it here). I also added some Balkansy Syr- a feta like cheese that is very popular here. And because I like the taste, I threw in some onion, red pepper, and garlic.

The result was surprisingly not-bad!

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Here’s the recipe:

Ingredients

For the mac’n cheese:

  • .5 red pepper
  • 1 small onion
  • 1 clove garlic
  • oil / butter for sauteeing
  • 1.5 cups milk
  • 3 tbs butter
  • 3 tbs flour
  • salt
  • pepper
  • paprika
  • chile powder
  • pinch of curry powder
  • 1 cup Edam cheese
  • .5 cup Balkansy Syr
  • .25 cup Parmesan Cheese
  • Lots of elbow pasta

For the topping

  • .75 cup breadcrumbs
  • 1 tbs melted butter
  • 1 tbs milk
  • .25 cup parmesan cheese
  • paprika/chile powder to taste

 

Method

  1. Pre-heat your oven for about 175 degrees Celcius.
  2. Cook the elbow pasta to al-dente; set aside.
  3. Sautee the onions and garlic in butter and olive oil until translucent. Add red peppers and stir, for about 1-2 minutes.
  4. Add the 3 tbs butter until all is melted; stir.
  5. Add the flour and stir, coating onion mixture evenly.
  6. Pour in the milk and bring to a gentle boil, stirring continuously all the time. Boil until mixture is reduced and thickened (you want a nice, thick sauce- think heavy cream).
  7. Add the cheese and stir until it is melted (the balkansy syr might not melt all the way- this is ok!). This is also a good time to add the spices! Go for your personal tastes, but take it easy on the curry powder. You really just want a pinch- no one will taste it, but the sauce will be richer.
  8. When everything is melted/mixed, add in the pasta, and mix it all together so everything is well coated.
  9. Add the macaroni mixture to your baking pan. I used a glass Pyrex dish of indeterminate size (maybe around 11/8 inches? Maybe? I don’t speak Czech man I don’t really know).
  10. In a separate container, mix the ingredients for the topping. Now sprinkle the topping over your mac’n cheese, so that everything is nicely coated in a golden brown crumble. Mmmm.
  11. Bake for about 10 minutes, or until the topping is sizzling and browned.
  12. Enjoy!

 

PS Here is an unrelated picture of a man dressed in an Indian costume trying to busk in Old Town Square. He was dancing to other busker’s music. We dubbed him the Parasitic Busker.

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PPS I totally went on a ghost tour yesterday and LOOK! An orb! Definitely not the result of the flash on my camera or anything.

580286_10151451680638097_96839933_nFun note: Those bears were a different color in real life. The gold only shows up on camera! They represent Ursa Major and Ursa Minor.

 

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