xmlns:fb='http://www.facebook.com/2008/fbml' Cheesy and Creamy Trinidad Macaroni Pie

Friday, August 16, 2013

Cheesy and Creamy Trinidad Macaroni Pie

Macaroni pie is not to be confused with the American mac and cheese, which my kids would eat everyday if I allow them to. They would let you know that it's not the same.

I have yet to replicate the flavors of the mac and cheese which comes in a blue box or that sold at Panera(If I do that I’ll be their hero), but I am confident about this recipe for macaroni pie. 

In my recipe, cooked macaroni is mixed with two types of cheese, milk and seasonings and baked until firm, much like a corn casserole, then cut into squares (I made it into a circle below to mess with your mind) and served alongside callaloo, stewed chicken and a salad for a typical Trinidadian Sunday lunch.

Macaroni pie is not a dish I would make frequently for my family, mainly because I have no discipline and would uncontrollably devour insane portions, however it makes an appearance at every family gathering. My cousin Marie is always responsible for providing a huge pie or two. It's usually rich, cheesy, decadent, sinful and if you know what goes into it, you would probably feel very guilty eating it, yet continue doing so. I speak from experience. I always treat myself to one square and savor every delicious high caloric bite.

There are many variations to this Trinidadian favorite. A friend adds grated carrots, some people choose not to add eggs(Mummy highly recommends adding eggs), many just use what we emigrants refer to as  “Trinidad Cheese”—ahem, that is a cheddar cheese imported from New Zealand. I have considered all the variations and have come up with my own version, incorporating my cousin's suggestion to use mozzarella, which I hope you will enjoy.

Whether I make it or not at home is irrelevant in this situation. I am a Trinidadian food blogger and no Trinidadian food blog is complete without it. For me this is a special occasion dish, so I am going all the way this time, but I plead with you, do not add this to your regular meal rotation. 

Ria's Trinidad Macaroni Pie
Serves 10-12, as a side dish

1 lb (16 oz) raw elbow macaroni
2 tablespoons butter, room temperature
1 lb sharp or extra sharp cheddar cheese, shredded** )
1 lb mozzarella, shredded
½ cups evaporated milk
2 eggs, whisked
1 tablespoon granulated garlic (or 2 cloves garlic, minced)
1 tablespoon onion powder (or 1 medium onion, minced)
2 tablespoons organic ketchup
2 teaspoons mustard
½ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1-2 tablespoons kosher salt (for boiling pasta)
Habanero (finely chopped, seeded or unseeded), or hot sauce--OPTIONAL
2 Fresh Pimento Peppers, chopped

**If "Trinidad Cheese"/New Zealand Cheddar Cheese is not available, use Cracker barrel extra sharp cheddar cheese, or cabot extra sharp cheddar. Cheese can be expensive so look out for those sales and stock up!!! 

Using the large side of box grater or a food processor, shred cheese.

Mix together and divide in half. 

In a bowl (or large measuring cup), mix eggs, milk, garlic powder, onion powder, ketchup, mustard and black pepper (also add hot pepper or hot sauce if using).

Bring a large pot of water (4 to 5 quarts) to a rapid boil. Add 1-2 tablespoons salt and pasta. Stir for the first minute or two to prevent sticking. Cook until al dente and drain(about 8 minutes). While pasta is still hot, place it into the same pot it was boiled in. Add butter and mix until melted. 

Add half of cheese and mix until combined. 

Stir in milk and egg mixture. 

Pour into a glass greased baking/casserole dish. 

Top with remaining half of grated cheese.

Place in a preheated oven (350 degrees Farenheit) and cook until golden brown, about 30-45 minutes(took 43 minutes in my oven).

Allow it to cool(or try your darndest), cut into squares...and pray for discipline.....

Don't miss me while I am gone, 
Cause I'll be working on another delicious recipe for you, 
until then..
...be good, 

Took this pic last weekend in Montauk, NY.


Cooking with Ria said...

yummy i will try this for thanksgiving. thanks.

Cooking with Ria said...

Just made this for my family, they loved it! I will most definitely be using this recipe again. Thanks!

Cooking with Ria said...

Except for the seasonings, this is exactly like southern U.S. style mac & cheese. That uses American cheddar, of course. But it's pretty much the same recipe.

Cooking with Ria said...

Hi Ria...made this recipe and it was truly excellent! Never thought of using mozzarella as normally everyone goes with cheddar but it was a great addition. Thanks for the great recipe.

Cooking with Ria said...

Thank you so much for this dish your right its very morish yum

Cooking with Ria said...

I agree, I put mine together differently making a cheese sauce, and the star of mine is black better depending on the cheese blend.

Cooking with Ria said...

Yummy, made this for a cookout and it received rave reviews. I used Wisconsin sharp and NY extra sharp cheddar cheeses since that was what I had on hand.

Cooking with Ria said...

So amazing! I added 90% lean ground beef seasoned with s&p, onion & garlic powder & minced garlic. Soooo good.

Cooking with Ria said...

Made a double batch of this recipe for a Thanksgiving meal and it all disappeared within minutes and got rave reviews. I thought it was great but I might have added a bit more salt. I also turned on the oven to broil to get a more golden top right at the end of the baking time which I liked.

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