This is a remake of my mama’s recipe. The southern way, the traditional way, the way my mama made hers is with sour cream, and then she would cut blocks of cheese into it and add lotsa pepper plus paprika for color.
One reason this recipe here is so sopped up is it’s layered with a rich egg custard and lots and lots of cheese. It’s the cheese that has the !ava, hunny! And it doesn’t matter what cheese you use. Grate up what’s in the fridge and mix ’em together for a pasta party! Cheddar, sharp cheddar, Gruyère, Swiss, Parmesan . . . they all like to play together!
While I make my mac in a big, deep cast-iron skillet, you can use a big casserole dish or a couple smaller ones to bake yours. Just know that your cookin’ time will be different and depend on how deep you’ve got yours layered.
Serves 3 or 4
Serves 2 to 4 as a side dish
Tamarind chutney is one of the best uses of tamarind on the planet! A favorite condiment for Indian snacks and street food, this chutney showcases the fruit’s date-like depth and tangy acidity, and balances them with brown sugar sweetness and the woody flavors of ginger and cumin. For all that complex flavor, it’s actually very easy to make and it keeps a long time. It’s a fantastic accompaniment to crispy fried food, but it’s also terrific drizzled over roasted vegetables.
THIS IS THE ULTIMATE mashed potato side dish, with just a hint of smoky cheese and savory onion. I’ve used the smoked Gouda cheese sparingly so it’s not overpowering, but it truly makes these potatoes great. These mashers are fantastic on their own; with an extra pat of butter; with Thanksgiving turkey gravy; on the side of my Pot Roast, grilled steak, or chicken; and with Easter ham. Consider halving the recipe for a smaller, weeknight meal.
A sweet-and-sour symmetry is inherent in my style of cooking. If it isn’t expressed through actual components of a dish, it’s delivered via side bowls or ramekins. Okra chow-chow has become one of my favorite media for attaining culinary harmony. And considering that okra is integral to Southern cuisine and agriculture, it’s also one of the clearest examples of two food cultures existing side by side and the ways they intersect. Serve okra chow-chow alongside scrapple (as I so often do), and you could consider this dish the poster child of Amish soul food.
You’d never guess you can create such lushness from opening three cans. Cinnamon and cloves with beans make an uncommon blend, but one that turns the beans sweet and fragrant. This was Sally’s first grown-up recipe, the remains of her obligatory vegetarian phase in college. These beans are what she craves when she’s tired, what she makes when she comes home from a trip and the cupboard is bare, and when she suddenly has seven children for dinner instead of two. The beans make a sublime burrito. Dip tortilla chips or stovetop-grilled whole wheat tortillas into them, and be sure to pass hot sauce and grated cheese at the table.
When the idea for this popped into my head, I could almost taste it. It’s such a fine tumble of contrasting flavours and textures, and the sourness comes from the mango or the tamarind: you can never be sure of a mango until you taste it, so hold fire on finishing the dressing until you’ve tried the mango – add a little honey if it is unripe and sour; leave it alone if it is edging towards sweet. This is great with pea shoots in place of rocket [Ed. note: rocket is arugula], coriander rather than mint, a red onion instead of the shallot, and by all means cast pomegranate seeds over the top. Play with it as you like.
Pickled cabbage may seem like a strange ingredient to add, but it lends this dish a subtle lactic tang—we got the idea from Isa Chandra Moskovitz, a blogger whose recipe for mac and ’shews (cashews) is widely loved.
Add a world of flavor to your cauliflower dish using the three variations below: miso ginger, tandoori, or Middle Eastern.