Many years ago, my BFF Shirley and I frequent this Japanese Restaurant at Scotts Isetan very often after work. I always order their Macaroni with Teriyaki Chicken Gratin. (I'm a boring person).
It's different from the American's Mac & Cheese, which is basically Macaroni with Cheese Sauce, if I'm not mistaken. This Japanese Macaroni Gratin, is not as thick or over loaded Cheese Sauce. It's more like a cream sauce with Cheese in it and the top is baked with golden Parmesan Cheese. It could be other Cheese though but I'm sure it's not breadcrumbs that gives it the colour. ;) And it goes really well with the succulent Teriyaki Chicken, which I shall add on the next time I improve on this dish. :)
The restaurant has closed years ago and we haven't found any Macaroni and Cheese Gratin quite close to theirs. As much as I tried my best to replicate the dish, I too didn't come close to it.
Well, if you would like to try making your own Mac & Cheese Gratin instead of buying the instant ones from the supermarkets, you might like to try my recipe. At least, it helps clears out Cheese scraps for mommies who are into making bentos for their kids.
Ingredients (for 1 portion only):
- 60g Macaroni or Assorted Pasta
- 50g Chopped Ham
- 1-2 tablespoon Parmesan Cheese
- 15g Butter
- 100ml Cooking Cream
- 120ml Water
- 1 tablespoon All Purpose Flour
- 2 slices Cheddar Cheese
- 1 slice Regular Cheese
How to do it:
- Cook macaroni in salted water according to the package or till just done.
- Pour them in a oven proof dish and set aside.
- Meanwhile, melt butter in a pan on low heat. Butter should not be burning.
- Gradually add in the flour and whisk till smooth.
- Turn up the heat to medium low and gradually add in the cooking cream while whisking.
- Repeat the same for the water.
- Add in the ham.
- Melt the cheese in the sauce till all has blend in.
- Pour the sauce over the cooked macaroni. Mix them if you like.
- Top it with Parmesan Cheese.
- Baked in a preheated oven at 220c for 10 mins.
- Serve hot.
- Do not cook the roux (butter with flour) in high heat as it will burn and the roux will turn dark.
- The amount of water add depends on how thick you want the sauce to be. Hence, add gradually and stop adding if you think the sauce is thin enough for you.
- I recommend you use 2 slices of cheddar cheese with 1 slice of regular or mozzarella. You can have any combination you like.
- For those who do not have an oven, you may serve it after step 10, with salt and ground pepper to taste, if you like.