Since everyone agrees that the best part of a macaroni and cheese is the crisp, crunchy topping, why not feature that as the star of the dish? That was the basic idea behind today's video recipe for crispy potato chip mac and cheese.
There are all sorts of "favorite" casserole toppings, but the one that seems to excite people the most is the potato chip crust. Maybe it's the extra crunch, or the cheesy flair, or that very few unpleasant memories include potato chips.So, the concept here is simple. Make a batch of béchamel (basic white sauce) using the recipe below. If you need to watch the technique, here is a video recipe for it, but use this post's measurements. To that add 12 ounces of really good cheese, and when it's melted, mix into cooked macaroni.
That would make a great meal as is, but when you add a big spoon of this impossibly crispy, cheesy, crunchy, buttery love…well, damn. Not only is this delicious, but it's a triumph of textural perfection. It's also a versatile recipe, as you can make the topping mixture and the white sauce ahead of time. I hope you give it a try, enjoy!
For the white sauce: (watch technique video here)
1/4 cup unsalted butter
1/4 cup plus 1 tablespoon all-purpose flour
3 cups cold milk
small pinch of nutmeg
1/4 teaspoon dry mustard
1/4 teaspoon cayenne, or to taste
1/4 teaspoon dried thyme, or few springs of fresh
1 1/2 teaspoons table salt, or to taste
Cheeses I used:
1/2 pound shredded extra-sharp cheddar cheese
1/4 pound shredded Gruyere cheese
For the potato chip topping:
1 tablespoon butter
1 bag (minus 6-7 chips) white cheddar kettle-style potato chips, crushed into medium-fine crumbs
1/3 cup finely grated Parmigiano-Reggiano (real Parmesan cheese)
2 tablespoons plain breadcrumbs
View the complete recipe