Creation of Mark and Nigella (and Bizzy)


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)

Makes 4 to 6 servings
Time: About 45 minutes


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

1. Preheat the oven to 400°F. Bring a large pot of water to a boil and salt it.
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.

Comfort food at its finest.  

Now for the topping, Nigella's Tomato Curry

Tomato Curry   (adapted)
2 tablespoons olive oil
2 large onions peeled and chopped
1 teaspoon kosher salt
1 ½ pints cherry or grape tomatoes, halved
2 teaspoons turmeric
1 teaspoon dried mustard
1/4 teaspoon hot chili powder
1 teaspoon garam masala
1 ½ cups frozen peas
Heat the oil in a saucepan that comes with a lid, and add the chopped onions, sprinkling with salt, and stirring frequently as you cook them over a low to medium heat for about 7 minutes.
Stir in the halved tomatoes, before stirring in the spices, and cook for 20 minutes with the lid on over a low heat.
Cook the peas in a small saucepan (in boiling salted water as usual), drain, and add to the tomato curry for the last 5 minutes’ cooking time. 
Top the mac and cheese with the tomato curry and your should have pleasant dreams, that night.

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  1. That curried tomato and pea topping looks absolutely delicious. What a great way to jazz up mac 'n cheese!

  2. That looks so great - and easily adaptable for GF!

  3. Another yummy version of mac 'n cheese. I love most all of them and have fun with riffs on the theme myself.

  4. I've never thought to add a vegetable curry to macaroni and cheese! I usually just add vegetables like broccoli, cauliflower, peas and green beans. This seems much more exotic.

  5. Okay, you had me at Bittman :)

    This is a great combo, and I'll be featuring you at Dr. Laura's Tasty Tuesday this week. Thanks for sharing!

    Dr. Laura

  6. Hi chaya! Oh my goodness this is definitely mac and cheese on steroids! I love both curry and mac and cheese and so this is definitely a match made in heavy! Thanks for sharing this on the tackling bittman and his buddies hop and for hosting as well! Hugs! Alex

  7. These recipes look great! I love pasta recipes.
    Im one of your newest followers.


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