Thursday, March 18, 2010

Pasta Month: Annie's Mac 'n' Cheese (aka: Nathanael remembers his bachelor days)

Nathanael Yellis

Most people do not have 4,000 years to make their own pasta. They go to the store and buy it. If they are bachelors, they forget to purchase sauce. Someone invented Annie's, and now people like this can buy pasta and cheese sauce in a handy box. Here's how to make it.

Goals: speed, minimization of dishes, and multi-tasking opportunities.


Also one pot--it could be a used tin can, if you are comfortable putting that on the stove.

Boil the water. The trick here is not putting too much water in the pot. If you do, it takes forever to boil and you may lose track of it while reading something for grad school or watching TV.

While the water is boiling, you can do almost anything you want. Total freedom. Except you need to stir the cheese into the milk. You have to do this step now, or else you will pour the cheese pouch into the water with the pasta. (While that mistake is recoverable, it's a decent reason to abandon the effort and see what your housemate is planning for dinner.)

Use a fork to stir the cheese! You don't want any unnecessary dishes to wash. (Unless you previously used a spoon, for the same reason.)

After the water boils, add pasta. Try and direct the inevitable splashing towards the crusty parts of the stove.

Stir the pasta occasionally, using the same fork--one utensil per meal (or per day), period.

Test the pasta by taking one piece out on the fork (a challenge, to be sure) and eating it. If you think it's done, or are tired of waiting, its done. If you later decide its not, microwaves are there for you.

Then drain the pasta around the dishes in your sink.
The key here is using the boiling water to pre-rinse some grime off the dirty dishes. Waste not, want not.

Now return the pasta to the pot, and stir in the cheese sauce.

The amateurs stop here.

Super secret Epicurable tip: butter.

Now eat from the pot, to prevent further accumulation of dishes.

Its best not to wash the pot immediately after, lest you forget you ate and start all over.


  1. Thanks for sharing your hilarious strategy on how a bachelor cooks mac & cheese! I may have to give the one utensil cooking a try, anything to cut down on dishes!

  2. LOL! We actually take an additional step... we add a can of tuna fish! Enjoy!

  3. Annie' Deluxe Macaroni & Cheese requires even LESS work and is super yummy too :)

  4. Love it! Ironically, this resourcefulness and humor is why you are no longer a bachelor :)

  5. I have read this post about three times, not because I would ever make it but because Nathanael is funny. Here's hoping for more!