Macaroni and cheese is one of my favorite dishes of all time. I love pasta, I love cheese, and the two together make for a delicious flavor explosion! When I make homemade macaroni and cheese, I tend to simply add whatever cheese I have on hand to whatever shaped small pasta I have, some milk, some butter, salt and peper and go. This was how I learned to make it as a youngster, and I find it tried and true. My paternal grandmother, Granny, always made Velveeta Shells and Cheese, which are still one of the yummiest varieties of mac and chesse in my opinion. I find the casserole style dishes to be very different from what we usually had growing up, but still delicious when I encounter them at potlucks. This receipe caught my attention due to its use of cream of celery soup. I expected cream of mushroom, but not cream of celery. I decided to channel my curiosity into experimentation, and gave this yummy take a go.
cream of celery soup, water, cooked elbow macaroni, shredded sharp cheddar cheese, buttered bread crumbs
Step One: in 1 ½ quart casserole dish, blend soup and water.
Step Two: stir in macaroni and 1 ½ cups of cheese. (I have to make a confession...I didn’t think about the difference between 3 cups COOKED and 3 cups UNCOOKED elbow macaroni. I ended up with twice the amount of macaroni I needed, as I measured BEFORE cooking. The good news was, I had cooked macaroni in my fridge for another night’s meal, but I learned to always check the ratio…)
Step Three: bake at 400 F for 25 minutes, or until hot.
Step Four: stir and top with bread crumbs and remaining cheese. (If you, like me, were curious about buttered bread crumbs, a quick Google search showed that people would butter their bread, toast, and then crumble. I had bread crumbs on hand, and per the suggestions within my search, melted butter and mixed it with the crumbs.)
Step Five: bake 5 minutes more.
Casserole-Style Macaroni and Cheese
1 can cream of celery soup,
¼ cup water,
3 cups cooked elbow macaroni
2 cups shredded sharp cheddar cheese
2 Tbs. buttered bread crumbs
In 1 ½ quart casserole dish, blend soup and water. Stir in macaroni and 1 ½ cups of cheese. Bake at 400 F for 25 minutes, or until hot. Stir and top with bread crumbs and remaining cheese. Bake 5 minutes more. Makes 4.5 cups, or 8 servings.
Submitted by Margaret Richard, Pearl Baptist Church Cookbook, 1990, Iron Station, NC