As comfort foods stand, my guess is that mac and cheese are on the top of the list. One of the best macaroni and cheese recipes, I have had, was one from Paula Deen (I am sure I cut back on the butter.). She has a mac and cheese with sliced tomatoes on top which was creamy and benefited from the tomato taste.
Bittman comes through with flying colors and I topped this with a Nigella Lawson recipe which could only bring it over the top. The curried tomatoes even beats Paula's sliced tomatoes and we also have peas. You never knew these vegetables could taste so good until the three of us, Mark, Nigella and Bizzy got cyber together and made this fantastic recipe.
Baked Macaroni and Cheese (adapted from Mark Bittman)
21/2 cups milk (low-fat is fine)
1 pound elbow, shell, ziti, or other cut pasta
3 tablespoons margarine
3 tablespoons rice flour
11/2 cups grated cheese, like sharp cheddar
1/2 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese
Freshly ground black pepper
1/2 cup or more tortilla chip crumbs
2. Cook the pasta to the point where it is almost done but you would still think it needed another minute or two to become tender. Drain it, rinse it quickly to stop the cooking, and put it in a large bowl.
3. In a small saucepan over medium-low heat, melt 3 tablespoons of the margarine; when it is foamy, add the flour and cook, stirring, until the mixture browns, about 5 minutes. Add about 1/4 cup of the milk to the hot flour mixture, stirring with a wire whisk all the while. As soon as the mixture becomes smooth, add a little more milk and continue to do so until all the milk is used up and the mixture is thick and smooth. Add the cheddar and stir.
5. Pour the sauce over the noodles, toss in the Parmesan, and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Grease a 9 x 13-inch or similar-size baking pan and turn the pasta mixture into it. Top liberally with crumbs and bake until bubbling and the crumbs turn brown, about 15 minutes. Serve piping hot.
Now for the topping, Nigella's Tomato Curry
Slightly Indulgent Tuesdays
Meatless Vegan Mondays
Dr. Laura's Tasty Tuesdays